Saturday, October 20, 2007

Making the Most of Fair Trade Month

The celebration of Fair Trade Month has been great for me this year. Between book events and my day job, I have been able to meet scores of Fair Traders and other socially responsible folks who have sharpened my understanding of Fair Trade and the reasons why consumers are so eager to learn about living a Fair Trade life. Whenever I get a little road weary, I am boosted by the curiosity, concern and commitment I see displayed, be it on the Arizona/Mexico border or in the hills of Vermont.

Still, I am a little relieved to say that my out-of-town travel for the month is now officially over. I'm back in my own apartment with my cats napping and family and friends near by. I can now hang out and plot ways to make the most of the remaining 11 days to celebrate. I'm visiting new blogs I learned about, such as the one written by Holly of Bread for the World, and I am updating my Facebook page with photos. There is still enough time to order Halloween Fair Trade chocolate from a Fair Trade Federation member. I can respond to some of my emails about farmer tours, especially those organized by the activists of United Students for Fair Trade.

Time at unnaturally high altitudes may be over for me until November (when I head to the Helping Hands Festival in Indianapolis!) but I'm still commemorating Fair Trade right here at home. You probably know that you don't have to travel from here to there to be a Fair Trader. From on-line activism to showing up for educational events to rethinking some of our spending assumptions, we can all participate in Fair Trade from home. Maybe this is the month for YOU to pick up new Fair Trade habits that will promote Fair Trade all year long right in your community!

This photo, taken by Katy Cantrell of CRS, is of farmers and roasters talking coffee quality at a Cooperative Coffees meeting in Nicaragua. I kind of like the connection between the mountains of Matagalpa, where I started my back-to-back trips this month, to the hills of Vermont, where I ended travel yesterday.

1 comment:

  1. You're so lucky to get to travel so much :-) and to do good deeds at the same time, it's a double whammy!

    I'm glad you're back home and safe. Congratulations on doing so much and being so active in the fair trade movement.

    I hope I'm still in Austin when you come. I'll check out your facebook pics, I'm excited to see if you posted Nicaragua pictures!! I'll probably go there next year, if I'm in El Salvador I'll take a tour of Central America.

    Take care and keep up the good work!