Sunday, April 9, 2017

Easter 2017 – Supporting Fair Trade with Divine Chocolate

Make your Easter more meaningful this year through supporting fair trade. Our Fair Trade WA shop is selling Divine Chocolate’s premium Ghana cocoa milk, white and dark chocolate eggs that make the perfect gift for children and adults alike.

The fair trade cooperative behind Divine Chocolate is Kuapa Kokoo, a Ghana based collective of farmers producing high quality since the 1990’s. The cocoa farmers own a 44% share in the company, ensuring they receive a greater share of profits and influence in the local cocoa industry. 

Representing over 50,000 small local growers, the fair trade enterprise has been able to invest in the community through a range of social projects - providing wells for clean drinking water and sanitation, funding the building of local schools and access to agricultural loans and technical assistance.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Producer focus - CAMACRAFTS

The story behind the needlework of the Laos women stretches over 1,000 years. Their tradition and skill is continued through CAMACRAFTS, a fair trade enterprise whose products such as purses, coasters, pillow covers and wall hangings are available in our Fair trade shop.

As a not-for profit CAMACRAFTS aims to guide the local villages towards self-sufficiency by generating income through preserving and promoting the traditional craft techniques. The earnings from their work are often the only source of cash income, used to supply food, access medicines and provide their children with education.

CAMACRAFTS products are made entirely by hand by the Lao and Hmong village women, using traditional needlework skills such as Hmong applique, cross stitch, batik and embroidery. The result is finely crafted, durable and intricately decorated handicrafts.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

World Water Day

World Water Day, on 22 March every year, is about taking action to tackle the water crisis.
There are over 663 million people living without a safe water supply close to home, spending countless hours queuing or trekking to distant sources, and coping with the health impacts of using contaminated water.

This year’s theme is waste water, and draws attention to reducing and reusing wastewater. 

Did you know:
  • By 2050, close to 70% of the world’s population will live in cities, compared to 50% today. (UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (2014), World Urbanization Prospects: 2014)
  • Globally, over 80% of the wastewater generated by society flows back into the ecosystem without being treated or reused. (Sato et. al, 2013)
  • 1.8 billion people use a source of drinking water contaminated with faeces. (WHO/UNICEF (2014), Progress on drinking water and sanitation: 2014)
  • Unsafe water, poor sanitation and hygiene cause around 842,000 deaths each year. (WHO (2014), Preventing diarrhoea through better water, sanitation and hygiene: exposures and impacts in low- and middle-income countries)

Everyone has the power to make a difference, whether you are an innovator like Ludwick Marishane, or a conscious shopper.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Harmony Day

Harmony Day is celebrated on the 21st of March.

Australia’s cultural diversity is formally recognized and promoted on this day.  Harmony day is about inclusiveness, respect and a sense of belonging for everyone.  It is a day for all Australians to embrace cultural diversity and to share what we have in common.  The central message for Harmony Day is that ‘everyone belongs’, reinforcing the importance of inclusiveness to all Australians.

Our cultural diversity is one of our greatest strengths and is at the heart of who we are. Multicultural Australia is an integral part of our nation’s history and character.

Since 1999, more than 65 000 Harmony Day events and activities have been celebrated across Australia, from the smallest childcare centers to the largest businesses.   What event or activity have you taken part in for Harmony Day? To see events around you, why not browse

In the Fair Trade Shop we have stocks from all over the world to promote and encourage diversity within our local communities which can extend out to the greater world.  

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Close the Gap is Australia's largest ever campaign to improve the health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

The Close the Gap campaign was launched in 2006 and seeks:
  1. implementation and monitoring of a comprehensive National Action Plan (developed in partnership with Indigenous communities and health organisations)
  2.  meaningful partnerships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities and health services
  3.  improvements to Indigenous participation, control and delivery of health services
  4. a commitment to provide adequate and long-term financial resources including strengthening of the Indigenous health workforce
  5. a way to address critical social issues that impact Indigenous health (including poor housing, nutrition, employment and education)

The campaign's goal is to close the health and life expectancy gap between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and non-Indigenous Australians within a generation. The campaign is built on evidence that shows that significant improvements in the health status of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples can be achieved within short time frames.

It seems hard to believe, but Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples are still dying 10 to 17 years younger than other Australians.  The poorer health of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples when compared to the non-Indigenous population is no secret – and something can be done about it. 

By joining our efforts we can make sure that by 2030 every Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander child born in this country has the same opportunity as other Australian children to live a long, healthy and happy life.

Everyone can make a difference.  One way of making a difference is through supporting Aboriginal Enterprises within the Fair Trade Shop.  

You can also sign Oxfam’s pledge;


Friday, March 10, 2017

Lahu handicraft

We have just received some beautiful hand woven bags and cosmetics pouches made by Lahu women in Thailand.

Who are the Lahu people?

Lahu people migrated from China in the area around the Tibetan plateau, to bordering Southeast Asian countries over the last 200 years.  Approximately 58,000 Lahu people live in Thailand.

Lahu handicrafts

Lahu women are skilled in weaving cloth both on back strap and foot treadle looms. Lahu weaving is unique and Lahu women are known for delicate and colourful patchwork trims.

Traditionally the tribal people have supported their families by engaging in slash and burn agriculture, which required them to move their village every few years in search of new fields when old ones lost their fertility. It is no longer possible for them to continue this semi-nomadic lifestyle, as there are no new places to move on to.  Also, mainly for ecological reasons the Thai Government prohibits the felling of trees and clearing of hillside land. So the tribal people are finding that they have less and land on which to support their families.

Women in Lahu communities produce handicrafts, such as the bags we now have in store.  Handicraft supports traditions of tribal community life.  

Come by the store to see (and feel) these beautiful products.

To read more about Lahu people click here