It’s this time of the year again and Fairtrade Fortnight – the UK’s biggest celebration of all things fair trade, is around the corner. This year the festivities will start on the 21st of February and come to an end on the 6th of March. During these 2 weeks, there will be plenty of opportunities for all people – big or small, to take part in different activities. Across the country, there are online workshops, seminars, cook-alongs, exhibitions and many more.
Here at Rainbow Turtle, we want to start the celebrations by organising a “Design a Fairtrade t-shirt” competition for young people. This year’s Fairtrade Fortnight theme is CHOOSE THE WORLD YOU WANT and we feel that giving young people a voice in the discussion about the world future is fundamental.
So we invite every young person in Renfrewshire and beyond to share their creativity with us. Don’t be shy! Creativity, striking ideas and understanding of the topic are just as important as artistic skills.
WE CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOUR DESIGNS!
The selected artworks will be displayed in the Rainbow Turtle shop and submitted for the national Fairtrade Fortnight competition organised by Fairtrade Foundation.
You can download the t-shirt template below or pick one up from the Rainbow Turtle shop.
THE DESIGNS HAVE TO BE SUBMITTED BY 4 PM ON THE 26TH FEBRUARY 2022 VIA EMAIL (firstname.lastname@example.org) OR TO THE RAINBOW TURTLE SHOP.
Have you seen our spectacular COP26 window display celebrating cooperation and close connections between consumers and producers and between all of the people around us? We hope so, as time doesn’t slow down and we had to say farewell to our COP display to welcome another wonderful artwork created by very talented Nicola Henry. Nicola is a Glasgow based illustrator, who was kind enough to let us into her world right in the time for Christmas. Come down to the shop to see us and admire Nicolas’s work in full. Besides the wonderful window display, we also have a lot of new stock and we (probably) have everything you need to finish off your Christmas shopping or simply treat yourself during this cold weather.
We have a range of nativity scenes – felt from Nepal, wood and olive wood from Bethlehem (doesn’t get more authentic than this!). On top of that, we have a big range of Christmas tree decorations and of course – TONS OF CHOCOLATE – white, milk, dark, vegan, big bars, mini bars, hearts, coins, elves, angles…you name it!
For those of you looking for more practical gifts, we have a fresh delivery of items made from inner tubes, coffee sacks and lorry curtain fabric: washbags, wallets, sports boot bags, ‘gig’ bags and decorations. For smaller humans we have some new Christmas themed items from Lanka Kade – perfect for Christmas stockings (which you can also get in our shop – Christmas sorted!).
If this doesn’t convince you, I don’t know what will. Our fantastic volunteers know answers to all your questions about the origins of items stocked in the shop. They are also great if you just want to pop by for a little chat. I’m going to risk saying that we have the best volunteers in town! 😀
So get your warm coat, hat and mittens (if you can’t find them, it’s ok, we have some in the shop!) and pop down to see us!
The United Nations Climate Change Conference COP26 is happening right now in Glasgow and as you know it is arguably the most important global leaders meeting in our lifetime to date. The future of our planet and its inhabitants is critically endangered and in need of immediate and confident action.
To mark this event and show our support, Rainbow Turtle is hosting an event in Paisley and we would like to invite you to join us.
During the evening we will be able to hear talks and presentations from a number of guests:
Jennifer Sambazi – Fairtrade coffee producer and cooperative leader from Uganda
Mauro Pereira – environmentalist, favela educator and part of Brazilian civil society delegation at COP26
Tzaritsa Asante – sustainable fashion designer from Scotland.
We would value this opportunity to meet you and share with you our plans for strengthening Renfrewshire’s commitment to fair trade, social justice and climate change action.
There will be a possibility to explore a fair trade stall with a selection of ethical and fairly traded goods and some time to enjoy Fairtrade tea or coffee and some light snacks after the talks.
The event is supported by the Renfrewshire Fairtrade steering group, which supports and promotes fair trade businesses and projects within Renfrewshire.
This years’ BLACK HISTORY MONTH is in full swing and I feel one cannot talk about fair trade, climate justice and social justice without talking about Africa and the people that call this beautiful continent home. Many events, both good and bad, shaped the way Africa is today and it is crucial to remember them and recognize their importance, for there is no future without the past. Today, however, I would like to reflect on how we see and how we talk about Africa.
For years, the African continent has been associated with poverty, corruption, political chaos, human rights abuse, various diseases and a lack of both development and ambition. While some of these things are undoubtedly present in parts of the continent, the challenge is to look beyond that, to look beyond media cliches and plain stereotypes, as shrouded behind all these is a beautiful, radiant, vibrant and diverse continent.
When I think of Africa I think about breath-taking scenery, diverse fauna and flora, delicious food and a wonderful variety of musical sounds. I think about all these but mostly, I think about the PEOPLE. It is disdainful to throw African people into one pot as this huge continent has more tribes, cultures, religious beliefs and languages than an average person can comprehend. From this diversity stems the true beauty of Africa. From Tunisia to South Africa, from Senegal to Somalia – Africa is a patchwork of cultures and traditions that are as radiant and thriving today as they were hundreds of years ago. So yes, Africa is a beautiful place that is alive thanks to the people that live there.
It is a popular belief that due to the fact that many African countries struggle with high levels of poverty, only pocket deep donations can overcome this problem. While, arguably, this approach might be relevant in some situations, for instance, environmental catastrophe or even armed conflict resolution, it is my opinion that Africa would indeed benefit from every one of us becoming a conscious citizen. We need to understand the effect our actions have on other people (however far they might be) and the planet. African people are no different to us in the meaning that they work hard to earn the living. The difference is in how that work is valued and treated. If we demand from our leaders to ensure honest, fair and decent pay for work to everyone on every step of the trade chain there will be no need for charity and aid money. To me, this is fundamental in understanding Africa and its people.
Perhaps this is quite obvious, but nonetheless, I would like you to think about those people. Think about people when you are shopping for this warm winter cardigan to prepare for long winter nights. Think about people when you are drinking that life-saving morning coffee to help you get through the day filled to the brim with things that just can not wait, kids that need your attention right now and the boss that wanted this paper on his desk yesterday. Think about people when you are making the comforting bowl of curry and rice for the dinner. Think about people when you are buying flowers for someone you care about. Think about people, as they make all these possible. Is this why they deserve to be treated fairly and with respect? No. They deserve to be treated as our equals because that is who they are. Being human is enough to deserve respect. Borders, different skin tones or a different way of saying ‘hello’ don’t change that. We need to treat people fairly because they are people.
So please, instead of thinking about poverty think about equality, instead of feeling pity think about fairness. Let’s stand up for human rights – this October and for as long as it’s needed.
We are talking Fair Trade gloves with an added, added bonus!
NOT ONLY do the gloves already wash away and weed out unfair trade BUT… they are also of a seriously high standard…
How do I know? I have washed my fair share of dishes and ended up with my fair share of wet hands, despite always wearing rubber gloves! I have a large family and have never owned an electric dishwasher. With a house full of human ones (not electric), we have, until now, gone through too many pairs of washing-up gloves. Always the right hand, falling foul of a sharp knife or whatever secret predator lies in the bubbles, defying rubber gloves.
No longer! At Rainbow Turtle I have purchased a pair of Traidcraft’s wonder gloves and at an extremely modest price too. Note the singular: a pair, still going strong, many dishes and dry hands later!
As if that is not joy enough, we have customers on a waiting list for the marvellous gardening gloves. They have never known such good gardening gloves!
Do not despair, if your hands are smaller than large, as they are also available in medium.
The secret to these marvellous gloves? – aside from the fantastic price, quality assurance and practical way to purchase and support Fair Trade – is a supply chain that starts in a region in southern Sri Lanka and in Laos. It supports the farmers who grow the rubber trees and tap them for latex.
Join us. Shout out loud and clear about this extremely practical way to support Fair Trade. I invite you to be a voice for washing away and weeding out unfair trade, whilst remaining clean and dry.
If you want to give the gloves a try, pop along to Rainbow Turtle and buy, buy, buy…
Would you like to know what Rainbow Turtle has in stock before you pop down to our delightful shop in Gauze Street, Paisley? Well now you can jump onto Google and type Rainbow Turtle into the search engine, or type a product that you’re looking for, and information about our shop and products will appear on your screen.
To search further for what we have in store, type into the search box under “See what’s in store” or click “View more” under the images of our products. Then come along to visit our shop, close to the centre of Paisley, and chat with our wonderful volunteers.
We at Rainbow Turtle Just Trading Ltd are joining Scotland’s Support for World Fair Trade Day on Saturday 8 May 2021. Would you like to join us? Perhaps you could buy a Fair Trade product on Saturday and enjoy the difference it makes to others’ lives, and our world. Together, we can make millions of differences, in just one day!
Globally, we are asking that all countries build back up, in a fair way. A way that is better for our people and for our planet. Because…
we can #BuildBackFairer!
Our world is ailing due to the pandemic, inequality and environmental challenges.
The pandemic has shown us that we can WORK TOGETHER. Let us continue that trend.
Together, we can bring about transformations in our economies and trading practices for a FAIR and SUSTAINABLE future.
WELCOME to Rainbow Turtle, 7 Gauze Street, Paisley, PH1 1EP : where you can buy Fair Trade, make a difference and even buy one get one free on quite Divine chocolate items – fair and delicious! #BuildBackFairer
It’s with great sadness that we said goodbye this week to our shop manager and education officer, Gemma Elliott. Gemma joined us almost exactly 3 years ago when Rainbow Turtle was going through a period of transition. The business was struggling financially and we had lost a number of key personnel over a short space of time (to lose one is a misfortune, but to lose two is carelessness?!!!). Gemma helped us to steady the ship, kept the shop running and maintained our work in schools.
We will miss Gemma’s bright personality and enthusiasm and wish her well in her new job.
(Oh, erm by the way this was not Gemma’s leaving do, it was Lynsay’s from 2019 but it was the only photo I could find of Gemma! We hope to be able to say goodbye to Gemma properly when things open up…)
Teachers and parents setting home learning activities may be interested in a fun game this Fairtrade Fortnight: being a Fair Trade detective! The Scottish Fair Trade Forum are asking for help in tracking down Fair Trade products all around Scotland, which you can alert them to here. These entries will then be added to their map, so that we can all see just how much the message of Fair Trade is spreading across the country.
So next time you visit the supermarket, local shop, or really any business with your children, ask them to have a look around for Fair Trade products, and maybe even let the shop know, either in person or online, if you aren’t happy with their selection!
Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 has kicked off today, and it is of course very different from usual, with almost all of the celebrations happening online. But since one of the most exciting elements of being a Fair Trade supporter is getting to sample all of the tasty treats, how can that be replicated at home?
Well, several organisations have put together guides on cooking with Fair Trade food! Traidcraft have produced these simple to follow videos:
Fairtrade Yorkshire have also arranged several live cook-along events as part of their Fairtrade Connections festival. You can find details, including what ingredients you’ll need, here.
Our friends at JTS have also posted many cooking videos and ideas for their ingredients over on their Facebook. Happy cooking (and eating)!