Fairtrade Fortnight 2018
19 February, 2018
Today, we have the luxury of being able to eat food from all over the world. However, most of us rarely stop to think about the people who produced our food. Or take the time to consider whether or not they were adequately paid for their work. Unfortunately, many farmers and workers in other countries are still not getting the fair deal they deserve.
Fairtrade Fortnight - 26 February to 11 March 2018 - is the perfect time for us all to show our support for fairer trade and consider how we can personally take action to shop (and eat!) more responsibly.
The event is organised annually by the Fairtrade Foundation to put a spotlight on trade. Schools, as well as businesses, community organisations and individuals, are being called upon to get involved this year.
What exactly is fair trade?
Fair trade is all about ensuring producers in other countries receive a fair price for the goods they make and grow for others.
The Fairtrade Foundation is the UK’s leading fair trade organisation. They approve and promote official Fairtrade products (the ones that bear the Fairtrade Mark). This includes everyday goods like bananas and coffee, but also more luxurious materials, like gold. The foundation also provides support to producers in other countries.
So how can my school get involved?
Lots of advice on how schools can get ready for Fairtrade Fortnight is available from this webpage. A good starting point is to take a look at the Schools Action Guide and then order the 2018 Events Pack. Both of these resources will prove very useful in planning Fairtrade activities at your school.
If you want to focus on teaching about Fairtrade, there are plenty of free classroom resources available online at www.schools.fairtrade.org.uk/resources. You’ll find something suitable for school pupils of any age, from KS1 all the way up to KS4. Even more resources about making trade fair can be found here.
Perhaps you’d like to introduce the ideas of Fairtrade to large groups in your school? These assembly plans should help you out. Again, there are different assemblies for different age groups so your school’s needs will be met.
Teachers wanting to use an interactive learning experience to teach about Fairtrade should check out Patrick’s Virtual Visit. This short Q&A video will make it seem like Patrick Kaberia, a Fairtrade tea producer, is really visiting your school! Alternatively, you can take your pupils on a virtual reality field trip using Fairtrade’s new virtual reality headsets. These are designed to play special videos shot in 360 degrees, which allow pupils to come right into the world of Fairtrade farmer. The headset costs £5 each and can be ordered online.
If these resources have inspired you, the Fairtrade Schools Award will be right up your street. The Awards are designed to complement the existing curriculum and have three progressive levels, each of which will contribute to instilling a deep commitment to Fairtrade in your school. More information can be found here.