What is the best going away present?
July 6, 2012 7:42 AM   Subscribe

Recommendations for a going away present for coworker/friend moving home to Bangladesh from New York?

A coworker is moving home to Bangladesh after ~6 years in the US (four of college and then two working with me as a lab tech). I've really enjoyed working with her and would like to get her a great going away present and thank you for all of the great work that she's done.

However, I'm sure that she won't have any extra space in her luggage, so am searching for something that either takes up no physical space, or something I can get for her there.

She's got fairly diverse tastes, she's currently working in a biochemistry lab, but loves art (painting in particular) and helping people. She hopes to get involved in making Bangladesh a better place (she's previously worked in a clinic providing a sterile birthing environment for slum residents, worked with inner city kids in the US, etc.). She'll be moving to Dhaka.

Bonus points if it could communicate in some way my confidence that she'll do great things no matter where or what she's doing.
posted by lab.beetle to Human Relations (7 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I was going to suggest maybe a nice photo of NYC, or a painting of the city. Perhaps you can give it to her before she leaves but offer to pay to have it shipped to her new address?

Maybe she expressed interest in a particular NY building, and you can get a photo/painting of that?
posted by backwards guitar at 8:19 AM on July 6, 2012 [1 favorite]

I would suggest a photo of something she would love. You can have it printed on a canvas where she can roll i tup and have it framed when she gets home. Then maybe some money for a donation when she gets home. I usually give cash because the dollar goes much further there than donating it from here. My mother and I donated two kilos of rice to a village in Vietnam. We have a friend who goes to Vietnam and does charity once they get there. The donation was only $100US from each of us. There is no way we could have purchased that much rice with $200 from here!
posted by Yellow at 8:33 AM on July 6, 2012

Do you have a budget in mind? Would offering to purchase a 5 year subscription to a blog site or her personal URL be a nice gift for her?
posted by infini at 9:01 AM on July 6, 2012

(I loved receiving my name as my URL for my birthday from a client 7 years ago. It was a 5 year registration)
posted by infini at 9:01 AM on July 6, 2012

Ooh, someone just pointed something out to me...it was 2 tons of rice. Sorry!!
posted by Yellow at 10:27 AM on July 6, 2012 [1 favorite]

Give her a card that expresses your respect and friendship and offers to become a donor (set an amount if required) should she set up any projects in Dhaka. This will keep a connection between you while valuing her goals and ideals.

(Dhaka is such hard place for poor women. Let me know if she sets up a clinic and I'll support it too).
posted by Kerasia at 5:41 PM on July 6, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks everyone for the great ideas.
posted by lab.beetle at 5:34 PM on July 8, 2012

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