[SlideDeck id='1317' width='100%' height='300px'] Katie MacDonald and her husband, Ian Rodhoue, opened 100-Mile Child, an online store that sells eco-friendly products for children, in December 2008. On October 31st, 2010, they opened their first retail store in the Carrot Common, a collection of stores located on Danforth Avenue, next to the Big Carrot. They went into business motivated by the belief that all consumers have the power to bring about positive change through conscientious purchasing.
According to Katie, “All of the products we sell have been made by companies who manufacture their products locally with care. This reduces the distance that a product has travelled before it reaches you, thereby reducing the overall environmental impact. It also ensures that the money spent supports local, small businesses.”
Katie also feels that local products tend to be safer for kids. When children receive a new toy, they play with it right away. When a recall is made on a toy because it was made with paint that has lead in it, it is too late. Many of 100-Mile Child’s toys are wooden without any finish – you can’t get safer than that!
Buying local also supports the Canadian economy and creates jobs. Many of the people who supply the store with toys are local mompreneurs (moms who are entrepreneurs).
Although 100-Mile Child is a small store, it has a lot to offer. Katie says, “In our range, you will find games that encourage cooperation, clothes made from natural fibres, toys handcrafted from recycled materials, and much more!”
Katie’s Top Five Christmas Presents:
1) Doll Cradle, made in Waterloo, $40
Why? Locally made, child safe, eco-friendly, and a great price point.
2) That Chickadee Feeling, written and printed in Kitchener, $10
Why? Encourages children to connect to nature and teaches about local, winter birds. It has won awards and is my all time favourite children’s book.
3) Puppet, made in Toronto, $28
Why? Created from old sweaters, one of a kind, and so cute!
4) Straws and Connectors, made in Waterloo, $16.99
Why? Locally made, encourages creative play, fun for a variety of ages (4-10 years), excellent price point.
5) Endangered Species Memory Game, made in Toronto, $29.99
Why? Teaches children about endangered animals, beautiful artwork, and good for a variety of ages (for younger children you can use less cards).