Fairtrade & Christ Church

What is Fairtrade?

Fairtrade was set up to create opportunities for the poorest farmers and workers in the third world who have been economically disadvantaged by the conventional trading system. The UK is the world’s largest market for Fairtrade goods, with about £190m worth sold last year out of global sales of over £500m which benefited over 5 million people in more than 50 countries.

Why at Christ Church should we buy Fairtrade?

Christ Church can make a difference through buying Fairtrade products. We know that if our tea, coffee or sugar has the Fairtrade mark, a minimum price has been paid to the producers covering their costs of production. Not only this but the producers receive an additional Fairtrade premium (an extra amount of money) to invest in their communities such as healthcare, clean water, education and so on.  Producers are small scale and organised into co-operatives who always get a democratic say in decisions – women included. No child or forced labour can occur.

Wouldn’t this make you feel proud whilst sipping your Fairtrade coffee?

Becoming a Fairtrade Church

Nearly 7000 churches in the UK are making the connection between trade and poverty and committing to using Fairtrade products including tea, coffee, sugar and biscuits. The Fairtrade Foundation Churches scheme is supported by 12 organisations.

Having such organisations supporting the Fairtrade Churches scheme makes a powerful statement that the leading Christian organisations and non governmental organisations in the UK support Fairtrade as a key solution to making trade fair. On becoming a Fairtrade Church we will receive a certificate to display to tell people we have made a commitment to Fairtrade.
The three goals Christ Church must fulfill are:

• Use Fairtrade tea and coffee after services and in all meetings for which they have responsibility

• Move forward on using other Fairtrade products such as sugar, biscuits and fruit

• Promote Fairtrade during Fairtrade Fortnight and during the year through events, worship and other activities whenever possible.

How you can help

A simple way each one of us can make a difference is by choosing to buy something with the Fairtrade mark when we are out and about. Harrogate has been certified a Fairtrade town and there are plenty of places that serve or stock Fairtrade products. You can find details of all Fairtrade products and also the list of Fairtrade retailers by clicking here:

Link to list of products www.fairtrade.org.uk

You can also support our Fairtrade events at Church.

Moussa’s story

‘I am happy that my children will get a better education and my hope is that they will go to university. This wouldn’t have been possible before Fairtrade’. Moussa Keita, Fairtrade cotton farmer in Mali. Growing cotton in Mali is not easy. It’s a very thirsty crop, and soaks a huge amount of nutrients from the soil. But because it’s the only cash crop grown in the area which sells for a decent price, the farmers need to keep investing in it. With farmers reporting lower rainfall each year, they are seriously concerned for their livelihoods.

Moussa Keita has eight children and two wives. Like other farmers in the region he struggled to fend for his family on a low income and with poor access to healthcare and education. On top of this, lack of agricultural equipment and poor roads made it difficult to earn a living. But six years ago he started farming Fairtrade cotton and has seen the positive changes over time. Moussa is part of the Dougourakoroni village co-op but he is also the Secretary of UC-CPC de Djidian, which is the umbrella co-operative for the 37 smaller, village-level co-ops. Moussa said it was difficult to get by before and he was only able to send three of his children to school. ‘Today, all my children can go to school because I can afford to pay the school fees; we eat every day, we are able to eat when we are hungry. I can also meet the costs of medicines should we need them.’

As well as earning enough money to meet his basic needs through the Fairtrade minimum price, Moussa’s co-operative receives a Fairtrade premium – extra money to invest in the business or community. Children used to have to walk 2.5km to get to school each day so part of the premium money was used to build two classrooms and a staffroom, which has benefitted 119 children so far. Moussa says: ‘Thanks to the profits from Fairtrade many parents are able to meet school fees and the number of children going to school has increased.’

The co-operative has a long list of other projects they would like to invest in and people in Moussa’s village are generally feeling more secure in their future and their livelihoods with Fairtrade.