Fairtrade Fortnight, Family Fun Day, sweatshop workshops and lots more...
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Fairtrade Fortnight 2014


Fairtrade Fortnight 2014 saw events all over Scotland and the Forum welcomed Fair Trade visitors from Nicaragua, Nepal and Colombia. There was even a debate in the Scottish Parliament marking the first anniversary of Scotland becoming a Fair Trade Nation.

Fatima Ismael, an agronomist engineer from Nicaragua, was a guest of the Forum during the first week of the fortnight. With over 25 years of experience working with producer organisations, Fatima was able to provide considerable knowledge to local groups and spread awareness of the importance of Fair Trade by attending various Q&A sessions and giving talks. Accompanied by our Spanish speaking volunteers, Mariana and Jordi, Fatima attended several successful events including visits to Lenzie, Elgin, Stirling, Pitlochry, St. Andrews and Edinburgh.



Fatima meeting Equal Exchange staff with Forum volunteers and Mandira and Amisha visiting the Forum's office at the beginning of their tour of Scotland.

Mandira Kuikel Bhattarai and Amisha Bhandari from Get Paper Industry (GPI), a Nepalese, Kathmandu-based cooperative, which is involved in the production and manufacturing of hand-made paper and paper-based products, were the guests of the Edinburgh Fair Trade City Group in the first week of the fortnight and guests of the Forum in week two. These Fair Trade producers were able to provide a unique perspective on Fair Trade by shifting the focus from the usual cash crops to demonstrate how Fair Trade can impact on those making papercrafts. Mandira and Amisha were able to attend multiple events in Stirling, Aberdeen, Alford, Montrose, Kirkintilloch, Cupar and Edinburgh. Furthermore, our visitors were able to experience the Scottish paper industry by touring a paper mill operating in Fife.



Albeiro Alfonso 'Foncho' Cantillo, a Colombian Banana Farmer and the face of the Fairtrade Foundation’s Fairtrade Fortnight 2014 campaign to "Make Bananas Fair" visited Scotland at the end of his 2 week-long visit to the UK. On Saturday 8 March, he travelled to Mansfield Park Farmers’ Market in Partick to meet with local farmers, stall-holders, campaigners and school groups. Foncho even had the opportunity to make a Fairtrade smoothie on the smoothiecycle. Foncho moved on to Johnstone in Renfrewshire, where he met with more Fair Trade supporters in the area who had taken part in a banana relay. Scott Erwin, Chair of the Glasgow Fairtrade Co-operative who lead the Partick presentation and Q&A session said: 'It was a rare opportunity to learn something about banana farming, and how the decisions we make here in the UK can affect the lives of those in developing countries, who are producing our food." Bananas are the most popular and most traded fruit in the world - but the truth is they are now sold so cheaply by most supermarkets that many farmers and workers who produce them are being trapped in a cycle of poverty.Sign the Fairtrade Foundation's petition to ‘Make Bananas Fair’. The petition has currently garnered nearly 17,000 signatures and is still open to more signatures so click here and campaign to Make Bananas Fair

Fair Trade Family Fun Day
Wednesday 9 April, Glasgow

The Scottish Fair Trade Forum will be hosting a Fair Trade Family Fun Day on Wednesday 9 April at The Arches, Argyle Street, Glasgow from 10.30am to 3.00pm. In the run-up to the Commonwealth Games, the day will be a celebration of the links between Scotland and the Fair Trade producing nations of the Commonwealth. The event will feature a host of children’s entertainment including music, story-telling, cartoon and animation workshops, children’s comedy, quizzes, Fair Trade treasure hunts and much more. There will a Commonwealth Fair Trade Village Market featuring stalls from organisations who wish to support the event.  The day is part-funded by the Big Lottery Scotland to celebrate the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the links with Scotland.  So many Commonwealth countries are our major Fair Trade partners and this is event highlights and celebrates these links. To learn more about the fun interactive programme please contact: Jim Lister on 0141 418 0562 or jlister@fairpley.com

Sweatshops workshops:
3 and 5 April

We have invited a speaker from War on Want to come to Scotland and share with us their research and campaigning on sweatshops.  There will be a discussion about what we can do to challenge sweatshop exploitation (including ideas of actions to take on April 24th, the anniversary of the Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh), and a debate about how sweatshop campaigning fits into the Fair Trade movement.  You can book your place at the talks using the links below.

Glasgow - Thurs 3rd April, 6-8pm - https://wowinglasgow.eventbrite.co.uk

Edinburgh - Sat 5th April, 11am - 1pm - https://wowinedinburgh.eventbrite.co.uk
 

Traidcraft Snack Attack


Traidcraft want to encourage the next generation of decision makers to be creative and pioneering in their approach to life and enterprise; to think about people as well as profit and the impact of the choices they make every day. This activity will tick some boxes for the school too, with links in to DT, literacy, English and citizenship. It'll also help to foster an enterprising spirit and awareness of the global dimension. Click here to learn more about the Snack Attack Challenge 2014.
 

Fair Trade Nation Lecture:
10 April

Sophi Tranchell, Managing Director at Divine Chocolate, will give the 2nd Annual Fair Trade Nation Lecture at 6.30pm on Thursday 10 April at Glasgow Caledonian University. More details about registration to follow but keep the date in your diary. 
 

News from Fair Trade Groups

The City of Aberdeen Fair Trade Group has just celebrated 10 years of Aberdeen having Fairtrade City status - check out the link on our website to listen to a song they have released to mark the occasion.

Member organisation profile: Fou Furnishings

Fou furnishings® is an online specialist organic bed, bath and nursery linens company  - www.foufurnishings.com - based out of Glasgow, whose luxurious linens can be found in homes, hotels and luxury yachts internationally. The company sells organic cotton bed linens which are 'dual certified' organic and Fairtrade, considered the 'gold standard' for sustainable cotton. Fou furnishings® only works with certified organic producers and is independently certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), by the UK Soil Association.
Stephanie McIntosh set up the company from scratch five years ago, following a career in home interiors and fashion retail; very aware that much of the conventional cotton supply chain, from crop to shop, could hardly be considered fair trade. Extending from cotton farmers and their families, exposure to pesticides, water pollution from hazardous chemicals in textile processing to the textile workers involved in making garments that can be found among familiar retail names. The principles of social justice, sustainability, quality, design and service are set at the heart of fou furnishings ® products and how the company operates. 

19% of Fairtrade cotton is organically produced. Fou furnishings ® also works with organic textiles because  organic cotton fibres consistently produce better quality yarns than conventional cotton and come with all the added eco benefits. The company has a relentless focus on quality, using only the finest organic cottons to ensure smooth, soft, exceptionally durable bedding and towels. All of their linens are specified and stringently tested to British, European and International standards which is why you will find them in homes to five-star hotels.
   
Whether buying for your home or green hospitality business, buying organic, Fairtrade linens doesn't mean paying more than their conventional cotton counterparts. So you just get better, sustainable quality linens at no extra cost to you, the environment or the people who make them. 

If you want to find out more about Fou organic, Fairtrade linens, their bespoke bedding service or request a sample, then just visit www.foufurnishings.com, call 0141 644 5211 or email stephanie@foufurnishings.com.
Copyright © 2014 Scottish Fair Trade Forum, All rights reserved.


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