Philippine art in every gift

Feel Good, Do Good: 10 Pinoy Gifts that Give Back

Posted by Looking for Juan Online Store on

For Filipinos, every day is a day of giving. Whatever the time or occasion, we make sure that we find the perfect gift for people who are dear to us. But gift-giving isn’t just about choosing nice presents for loved ones. It’s also a great opportunity to make a difference in other’s lives. This season, go the extra mile and give deeper meaning to your Paskong Pinoy with these Filipino-made, artful gifts that give back.

A part of the purchases from these gifts will go to book donations in support for CANVAS’ 1 Million Books for 1 Million Filipino Children Campaign, a program that donates books to children living in underprivileged communities to improve their access to books, functional literacy, and reading skills.

10. For the empowered child

Click to shop: Safe Space: A Kid’s Guide to Data Privacy, #YouThink: Fight Fake News, and Karapat Dapat (₱300 each)

This year, we have spent most of our lives online. Now, more than ever, it’s important to know one’s rights and how to protect them even in the digital world, and this trio of activity books captures just that.

Karapat Dapat: Bata Alamin ang Iyong Karapatan, written by May Tobias-Papa and illustrated by Ang Ilustrador ng Kabataan (Ang I.N.K.) for kids 6 to 12 years old, depicts the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in a way that children themselves can understand. The book empowers them by letting them know that they are valuable, celebrated, and protected.

Safe Space: A Kid’s Guide to Data Privacy introduces the concept of personal data to children ages 6 to 12, teaching them how to protect themselves online. Using child-friendly language and fun activities, it breaks down how social media and online gaming platforms work, how information can be used, and why privacy settings should be strengthened. 

#YouThink: Fight Fake News, on the other hand, is geared for older kids ages 12 to 18. This zine-style book unpacks false information and the many forms that it may take such as misleading information, fake photos, and deep fakes. It also discusses how to spot fake information we see online. Both Safe Space and #YouThink feature words by Gigo Alampay, book design by Studio Dialogo, and illustrations by artists Liza Flores, Abi Goy, Frances Alvarez and Jamie Bauza of Ang I.N.K.

9. For the woke teen

Silent Witnesses:

Click to shop: Silent Witnesses: Stories from the Survivors of Martial Law (₱600)

Silent Witnesses is a collection of 10 selected affidavits by survivors of atrocities committed by the Marcos regime. To keep children informed while trusting them to have their own reflections, the book is kept on its barest essentials—distilled into 10 three-sentence stories and paired with Renz Baluyot's powerful artworks. The book is recommended for teens 12 to 18 with parental guidance.

Retelling these tales reminds us of a dark past that can quite easily happen again if we forget, and it’s important that we, including children, remember and learn from history.

8. For the home-decorating tita

Click to shop: Limited Edition Mini Canvas Art Prints (₱2500)

They say a home is a reflection of one’s personality, and what’s more perfect gift for a tita friend who’s busy curating her home than these limited edition mini canvas art prints. The prints feature works by renowned Filipino artists Anthony Palomo, Farley Del Rosario, Jomike Tejido, John Paul Antido, Jon Jaylo, Jose John Santos III, Romeo Forbes Jr., and Sergio Bumatay III. Digitally printed on canvas and framed in wood, these statement pieces are ready to be hung on walls, placed on desks, or displayed anywhere. Get your tita friend a piece of local art and keep her home ready for that Paskong Pinoy feels! 

7. For the writer pal

    Click to shop: Why Words Matter: Why We Read and Why We Write (₱1500)

    Why Words Matter: Why We Read and Why We Write is a poetic reflection of multi-awarded writer Butch Dalisay on reading, writing, language, literature, and the enduring power of words. Dalisay’s piece featured in this wonderful read was originally delivered in 2017 at TEDxDiliman. It was then fleshed out into a special book complemented by the uniquely lyrical art of Marcel Antonio.

    6. For the playful inaanak

     Click to shop: Art Face Masks for Kids (₱230 each)

    Keep kids safe and protected with these art face masks inspired by characters from CANVAS storybooks, transformed into playful and magical artworks by Sophia Demanawa. These 100% Philippine-made masks are made of PRO+TEK™ fabric, a DOST-PRI certified PPE and mask material that’s breathable, stretchable, cool, water-resistant, washable, and reusable. These come with pockets for filters and are available in six playful designs. Sized 6 inches x 5 inches, these are perfect for kids ages 6 to 10!

    5. For the office BFFs

    Click to shop: Art Notch Pads (₱300 each)

    Scribble notes, ideas, and quick reminders in style with these one-of-a-kind art notch pads with artworks from CANVAS’ 2019 Proof-of-Concept Museum Show, "Tumba Tumba: Children's Museum of Philippine Art." Featuring artworks by Marcel Antonio, Renz Baluyot, and Ioannis Sicuya, these artful gifts that give back will surely be one of your office staples!

     4. For the eco-conscious mom

    Click to shop: Upcycled Art Tote Bags (₱800 each)

    Have you ever given a bag with a story to tell? We’ll here’s your chance with our upcycled art tote bags. The bags start from artworks made by Filipino artists. They are then printed into art banners used at Looking for Juan's Outdoor Banner Project—an annual effort to bring art closer to the public. They are then sewn into tote bags by women from a local community to provide an extra means of livelihood for them.

    Beautiful, heavy-duty, and truly unique, every bag design is one-of-a-kind. It's a stunning gift that your eco-conscious mom will be happy to use every day.

     3. For the fur parent

    Click to shop: Ang Aklatang Pusa (The Cat Library) (₱1000)

    A story about a library of cats? Count us in! Ang Aklatang Pusa (The Cat Library), written by Eugene Evasco featuring artworks by Jared Yokte, tells the heartwarming tale of Ms. Salvacion, a retired librarian who takes all the abandoned cats in her backyard and opens a cat library, where she catalogues them according to characteristics and lends them to the right people who are in need of comfort or inspiration. This book not only shows the healing power of pets, but also raises awareness for animal rights and marginalized groups.

    2. For the crafty sister

     Click to shop: Art Stickers (₱100 each)

    Does your sister love writing in her diary or doing crafts? Surprise her with these art stickers printed on eco-friendly paper in partnership with Norde International. The stickers come in six playful designs inspired by characters and artworks from CANVAS' activity and story books: Why Words Matter, Karapat Dapat, and Looking for Juan. Pocket-friendly yet meaningful, these gifts that give back are perfect for crafty loved ones!

    1. For the long-distance buddy

    Click to shop: Art Cards in Red Leatherette Envelope (₱350)

    Make a friend smile even if they’re miles away with a happy little note or surprise them with a gift set of 10 booklet-style art cards encased in a red leatherette envelope so you can exchange letters the old-school way! Each card features different artworks from CANVAS storybooks made by Filipino artists: Sergio Bumatay III, Japs Antido, Farley Del Rosario, Romeo Forbes Jr., Liza Flores, Aldy Aguirre, and Tippy Go (The Googly Gooeys).

    It’s amazing how a simple act of gift-giving can be an agent of change. It’s now time to start a new tradition of choosing gifts that give back to support a cause you believe in. 

    Books transform lives—and through purchasing gifts from Looking for Juan, you become our mission partner in helping children become informed, empowered, and ready to create change. Together, let’s make it happen!

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