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shop the world

all in one place

While the Black Friday sales are still several weeks away, you can get a jump start on holiday shopping and feel good about it at the same time.  Nearly 20 vendors representing non-profit groups, fair trade organizations and ministries will be setting up in Wesley Hall and other rooms on the upper floor of the church at this year's Alternative Gift Fair. 

This event provides an opportunity to shop the world all in one place.  Every gift you buy actually helps you give twice; once to the organization you are helping, and the second time to the recipient of your gift.  Be sure and spread the word and invite your friends to this enlightening event.

Scroll down to learn more about all the vendors at AGF 2017


2017 vendors

  • Compassion Counseling

    We will be selling a variety of gifts of peace, hope and encouragement, such as prayer beads, essential oil diffuser necklaces, and inspirational art. These are handmade and donated by our volunteers.  In addition, we will have "dip mix ornaments," assembled by Sunday School classes at  1st UMC, and homemade, beautifully decorated doll cakes! 

    The proceeds will be used to make counseling services available at a reduced fee to those who are unable to afford the full fee.  

    Learn more about Compassion Counseling by clicking here

  • Family Promise of Blount County

    The Family Promise mission is to end family homelessness…one family at a time. This organization provides emergency shelter, intensive case management, transitional housing and a 12-month follow up program for families in our community who are homeless.

    This year, we will be selling customized, personalized Christmas ornaments and keychains. These are made locally by a friend of Family Promise and 50% of the proceeds are donated back to support the organization's mission. You will aslo find three wick candles at the Family Promise booth.

  • 1st Kids Ministries

    Tasty treats make great gifts. This year, the children of the church are offering up quite a selection of them. Jars will be filled with different mixtures including: friendship tea, soup mix and hot cocoa. Proceeds will be donated to the Holston United Methodist Home for Children located in Greeneville , TN. 

    These gift jars are limited in number so please come get them early.  They  make wonderful gifts, handmade with love by the children of our church. Give one to a special friend !

  • The Gate

    The GATE will be offering handmade Christmas Angel ornaments that program participants helped create. In addition to more Okra Angels that were so popular in 2015, the GATE team has created a new Angel made out of repurposed ties.

    All of the money donated during Christmas season sales will be utilized towards program enrichment for the 52 adults with disabilities currently served by our day program. Remember: Each GATE Angel is created by those and for those who strive to fly with their own unique wings.

    You can find The Gate on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/TheGateGatewayToIndependence

  • Good Neighbors of Blount County

    Good Neighbors offers help to neighbors in need who are facing eviction or utility disconnection.  This group will have the Good Neighbors blend coffee available (already wrapped for gifting).  

    Through your generosity, this organization can fulfill its mission to provide assistance, offer hope and empower our neighbors through one on one coaching and referral. 

    Coffee is priced at $1 (regular and decaf).

    Learn more about Good Neighbors by clicking here.

  • Grace Home for Children

    South Sudan

    The United Methodist Church has two orphanages in South Sudan. Due to conflict in the area the children were evacuated to Uganda where they could be safe and stay together. We want them to continue their education there. 

    Money raised at the Alternative Gift Fair will go towards supporting the children until they can return to their native country.

    Items available are hand-made jewelry including necklaces, bracelets, and earrings and a variety of styles. There is something for everyone and 100% of the proceeds go to the children's support.

  • Humane Society of East TN

    The mission and purpose of the Humane Society of East Tennessee is to promote the welfare of animals, to strengthen the human-animal bond and to further the cause of responsible animal adoption and ownership through education and public awareness. 

    The Society actively promotes kindness, the elimination of cruelty to and neglect of all animals, and the lifelong commitment of people to their pets. Selling a variety of items for pet owners!!

  • Kenya Partners

    Kenya Partners is a non-profit organization providing orphans and vulnerable children in Kenya an opportunity for quality education, reliable health care and hope for the future. Purchasing items helps support the families of the Kenyan women. 

    Items sold include nativity sets, angels, and other Christmas decorations made from local Kenyan materials; jewelry; wooden salad servers; screen-printed pillow covers; and lovely containers made from re-cycled materials.

    To learn more about Kenya Partners click here.

  • Kuldiga Partnership

    This group is part of 1st UMC's Latvian Ministries.  1st United Methodist Church works closely with our sister Church in Kuldiga, Latvia, supporting them spiritually through our prayers, financially by contributing to the LAMB Pastor’s Salary Fund, and various other projects to help them gain their own financial independence.

    At this year's booth you will find various items that were made by the Latvian people including:  laser cut balsam wood Christmas ornaments with Latvian symbols, protestant prayer beads, and various beaded items.

  • MayaWorks

    This fair trade certified nonprofit organization empowers Mayan women in Guatemala to be economically self-sufficient by providing a market in this country for their handwoven textiles and beaded jewelry and accessories. 

    MayaWorks provides scholarships for the artisans' daughters to attend school and also makes microcredit loans available to the artisans.

    Learn more about this organization at www.mayaworks.org .

  • New Hope

    Blount County Children's Advocacy Center

    New Hope is a child-friendly safe place for child victims of abuse or trauma. At this year’s Alternative Gift Fair, the center will be selling handcrafted mason jar lid ornaments  for a minimal donation.  All donations help make forensic interview advocacy, therapy, and prevention training possible.


    To learn more about the New Hope Center visit: blountkids.org

  • Olive Branch Olive Oil

    This 10-year-old non-profit social enterprise assists Holy Land olive farmers by distributing Palestinian extra virgin, organic, fair-trade olive oil in Tennessee and around the Southeastern U.S.  The oil is flavorful, delicious, and health enhancing, and not only elevates the taste of any food that you prepare, but also makes a perfect gift during the holiday season.

  • Pukuka Refugee Children

    Items for sale are table runners for fall and Christmas, a variety of washable cloth baskets for children's small toys, doggie treats, Christmas cards, cosmetics, office pencils and note or the gift of your choice. All are handmade. 

    Proceeds will be used to help pay school fees for our Pukuka children now living in a refugee camp in Uganda.

  • Shop the World Gifts

    This Fair Trade store features unique, handmade items from over 45 third world countries.  Selections include jewelry, scarves, nativities, purses, home décor, musical items, jackets and much more.  There is something for everyone on your Christmas list and gifts to fit  every budget.

    To learn more about Shop the World (based here in East Tennessee) please visit: shoptheworldgifts.com

  • Tradewinds

    This fair trade shop is a ministry of Monte Vista Baptist Church. Products come from all over the world and include coffee, chocolate, jewelry, gift items, nativities, baskets, glassware and more. These products have been made by artisans in mostly 3rd world countries who are given a fair wage, work in safe environments and are treated with dignity.   

    For more information on Tradewinds click here.

  • United Methodist Women

    Pecans are a perennial favorite of the Alternative Gift Fair.  Ladies from the United Methodist Women will be selling a variety of wonderful pecans for baking, giving as gifts, or just enjoying as a marvelous snack.

  • Welcome Table

    1st United Methodist Church (Thursday) and New Providence Presbyterian Church (Tuesday) offer the community a weekly opportunity to break bread together. Dozens of faithful volunteers serve the community (preparing,, serving, and cleaning up) by offering a free meal to anyone who comes to the Welcome Table. This ministry is a true labor of love!!

    We will be selling homemade strawberry, blueberry, and blackberry jam and apple butter. Come early for the best selection.

    Click here to learn more about Welcome Table and how you can volunteer.