Amidst end-of-summer insanity, it can be easy to lose ourselves in preparations for the year ahead. Between work and school, there never seems to be enough time to get everything done and accomplish what we had hoped.
However busy autumn gets, we can’t lose sight of the things that are most important. Passion, love, family. The people in our lives, and the people that do things for us that we don’t ever see. Namely, third world farmers. The dedicated and unfairly paid laborers who pick our cotton, cocoa beans and bananas who are also someone’s mother, brother, grandpa or niece.
Whether you are a parent or a teacher or a student yourself, it doesn’t take time, effort or money to instill values of morality in a future generation or foster them in yourself. It takes you having a sense of integrity, and standing up for the livelihood of people who cannot stand up for themselves. So what can you do? Well, that’s up to you. Just know that there are many options for whoever you are and whatever phase of life you are in.
Raising a kid is hard. To bring your child up properly you often have to seek help in many situations, especially when it comes time for your child to learn about things that you are no expert on. Luckily, Fairtrade America has an abundance of resources in place to assist you in seamlessly integrating meaningful dialog and information into everyday life.
- Breakfast & Bananas: Morning meals before school are the perfect time to give your child a drop of knowledge and quiz them on little facts. Ask your child if they know about where their bananas come from and the people behind the fruit they eat. Here are the facts and what Fairtrade is doing to better the industry.
- School Bake Sale Ingenuity: When the opportunity arises to bake a sweet treat for others to enjoy, take the time to turn dessert into a learning experience by using Fairtrade certified ingredients and explaining why it’s important.
- Can You Find It On A Map: While out grocery shopping or even browsing your shelves for food at home, introduce your child to the geographical locations of their favorite snacks. Give them context behind the ingredients and a hunger to learn about the world that reaches beyond food.
“Children are curious and have a natural inclination to want to help others. Every child ultimately understands the concept of ‘fairness’ and nurturing that is important.” – Fairtrade Marketing Director Mary Linnell-Simmons
For Students/ Young Adults:
Social justice is becoming an increasingly important topic in today’s society, but it’s more than a discussion point. The talk of justice doesn’t end outside of America. There are countries which need your activism and advocacy just as urgently. Practice what you preach by supporting brands that pay fair wages and care about their workers.
- Cool Certified Clothing: Dhana, Inc. children’s clothing, and a list of 35 fair trade & ethical clothing brands for men and women.
- Fabulous Fairtrade Food: Nature’s Path breakfast foods, Once Again peanut, hazelnut and almond butter spreads, pantry items and snack foods by Field Day, as well as fruits, nuts, cocoa, coffee and tea from Equal Exchange.
Any good teacher knows that proper education about the world is crucial to a student’s well-rounded development. Learning about topics such as global economics, gender equity, child labor and environmental sustainability can expand a student’s critical thought process and broaden their personal perspectives.
- Individualized Learning: Different lesson plans for different grade levels about the origins of chocolate and the importance of Fairtrade by Catholic Relief Services.
- Resources For Days: Projects, Games, Infographics and Talking Points from Equal Exchange to help your students become world-class Fairtrade pros and upstanding citizens.
- Free Guides On How To Be A Fairtrade Educator: Fairtrade has compiled many instant download documents to ensure that you have no problem researching issues concerning child labor and equal pay. Get your teach on!
Visit Fairtrade America to learn more.
Photo: Linus Hallgren via Fairtrade