The holidays are the perfect time to give back to your favorite charity â€“ or to make a donation to a new one. A glowing way to start is with the purchase of a candle for a worthy cause. And there are a whole range of charities from which to choose â€“ from child advocacy groups, AIDS and cancer research to dog and cat rescue shelters. Here are three celebrity-endorsed charities and three more with hearts of gold. Your holidays will be even more joyous when you give a gift that helps others.
AID AIDS WITH ELTON
Pop superstar Elton John has been working tirelessly for AIDS charities worldwide. Now you can help, too, with the Elton John Holiday Candle. The handsomely packaged candle is produced by NEST Fragrances and combines a blend of evergreen and balsam fir needles with a sparkling citrus accord. The candle, garnished with a golden crown, will burn for at least 60 hours to fill your home with the scent of the holidays. $38 at Neiman Marcus.
MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Dr. McDreamy, whose mother was twice diagnosed with ovarian cancer, is the driving force behind The Patrick Dempsey Center for Cancer Hope & Healing at The Central Maine Comprehensive Cancer Center. This worthy organization provides support, education, and health promotion for those touched by cancer. Theyâ€™ve teamed up with Castine Candle Company with candle-making kits for kids. When you log onto their web site, youâ€™ll find this awesome Candle Shop in a Box — Winter Wonderland. This one-of-a-kind interactive craft includes everything children need to make their own candles. Other kits available at a variety of prices. $46 at www.castinecandle.com.
Songbird Whitney Houston has been working with her manager Patricia Houston â€“ who happens to be her sister-in-law â€“ to develop and promote a scented candle line. Marion P Candles are designed to promote well-being and peace of mind. Inspired by a trip to Israel, they are made with 100 percent Kosher soy that magically melts into shea butter that you can apply to your skin to keep it moisturized. The candles are aptly named Galilea, Jericho, Jordina, The Beatitudes, Tiberias, Emmanuel and Noel. A portion of the proceeds go to Teen Summit to help rebuild, restore and repair the lives of young adults. $65 at www.marionpcandles.com.
A THOUGHT BECAME A MISSION
North Woods Home Store internet site was doing well with their cutting boards, and scented candles. And then one of their employees was diagnosed with cancer and the owner decided to donate a portion of the sales for one month to the American Cancer Society. The idea then grew into the Candles for Charity mission and now 10 percent of all candle sales are donated to a variety of charities â€“ one a month. The Soy Country Comfort Candle â€“ Cinnamon Stick is made in the USA and burns for about 106 hours. $13.95 at www.northwoodshomestore.com.
BECAUSE OF YOUâ€¦
Candle For A Cause was started by Victoria Andahazy and Vickie Wagner who want to make the world a better place â€“ one candle at a time. They have combined their talents and brainpower to pay it forward. Their worthy causes include Global Green (to help the environment), The Halo Foundation (to bring art therapy to orphans), Much Love (to help rescue abused and neglected animals), Web Wise Kids (to bring tech programs to kids) and Every Mother Counts (an advocacy program for pregnant moms). The soy candles are color coded to match the charity and come in a variety of delicious aromas, like the Rose & Chocolate Candle to help orphans worldwide. $38 at www.candleforacause.com.
HAVE A HEART OF GOLD
Gold Canyon Sugar Nâ€™ Spice Scented Candle is the gift of everything nice. The coconut cream, almond brittle and hazelnut aromas blend with cinnamon sugar and fresh nutmeg for an irresistible fragrance any time of year. Gold Canyon, a company that produces environmentally friendly home cleaning products, bath and body items and hosts fundraising parties, donates 100 percent of the proceeds from this candle to the Prayer Child Foundation, which benefits children with physical and emotional challenges. $17.48 at www.goldcanyon.com.