FAIR TRADE AT FRONTIERS – SPEAKER EVENT with MARYAM BIBI

June 27, 2011

1st July 2011 – 7pm – 9pm – Quaker Meeting House, St Giles, Oxford. Free entry. Refreshments provided. All welcome.

Maryam Bibi, founder and director of Khwendo Kor, will be talking about the connections between fair trade, education and empowerment, peace and environmental sustainability in the Tribal Areas and former North West Frontier Province of Pakistan. Maryam, together with three women friends, established Khwendo Kor (Pashto for ‘Sister’s Home’) in 1993. The organisation now works in over 300 villages to create strong and progressive communities.

The session will start with refreshments at 7.00pm, followed by an introduction and short video about the work of Khwendo Kor. Maryam will speak, followed by time for questions and answers and general discussions and further refreshments and conversation.

You can find out more about Khwendo Kor and Maryam’s work in many articles online: http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=maryam+bibi

Organised by Oxford City Fair Trade Coalition (OFTC) and UK Friends of Khwendo Kor (FROK) and with support from Oxford Quaker Meeting. Find out more at http://www.oxfairtrade.org.uk and http://www.frok.org.uk/.

A poster is attached that you can use to promote this event. Please circulate the details above to any networks you feel may be interested.

Maryam Bibi Event Poster-email 1.pdf


This is ‘Your Fairtrade City’ Week!

June 19, 2011

We need your help to keep Oxford a Fairtrade City.

To renew our status as a Fairtrade City, we need to find out if we still have enough shops, restaurants and workplaces that provide two or more Fairtrade products.

How can you help?

This week – Help map Fairtrade provision in your area
Visit shops, restaurants and workplaces in your street or area to find out about their Fairtrade policy and provision.

Contact us on yourfairtradecity@gmail.com  to find out what we would like you to ask them and what information to give them if they don’t yet know about Fairtrade.

Saturday 25th – Join the Day of Action and Celebration  
10.30 am- 5 pm St Michael at the Northgate
Become a Fairtrade Treasure Hunter and explore the City Centre to discover Fairtrade treasure in as many shops, restaurants and workplace canteens as possible. Bring or send the information back to “base camp”, where other volunteers will update a giant Fairtrade Map of Oxford.

Free Fairtrade tea, coffee and snacks for Fairtrade Treasure Hunters! If you find a Golden Ticket in one of the shops/restaurants you win a prize!

Join us at the Far From the Madding Crowd pub in the evening to celebrate our Fairtrade City!

The information gathered will be fed into Oxford’s report to the Fairtrade Foundation, applying for renewal of our Fairtrade City status, and the map will be reproduced to provide Oxford residents and visitors with information about where to buy their Fairtrade goods.

Businesses, schools, colleges, public institutions, community groups and faith groups can also get involved. Visit the relevant pages on Your Fairtrade City page on the right or email us at the address below.

For more information or to sign up as a volunteer, contact Sabita Banerji at yourfairtradecity@gmail.com


Oxford Fairtrade Hack-day: create something that makes a difference

June 15, 2011

Oxford Fairtrade Hack-day: create something in your Fair Trade City

Oxford is an official Fairtrade City. It’s not something we’re good at shouting about. But we were one of the first.

However, to stay a Fairtrade City we have to renew our ‘status’ every few years – and the next renewal is coming up. This year we want to make our renewal process a bit different. Instead of a just having a bunch of volunteers wander around a few shops with clipboards to check we have lots of places stocking Fair trade products for our renewal application, we want to take the information that’s collected on Oxford Fair Trade and:

Build some sort of online directory of what Fairtrade products you can get in Oxford and where;
Find a way for people to report Fairtrade-stocking retailers using their mobiles;
Find ways of crowdsourcing photos for Fairtrade retailers in Oxford;
Do lots of other cool things with the data we collect (like making maps that show the connection between shops in Oxford and suppliers the other side of the globe; mashing-up Fairtrade info with Daily Info data; linking up with local radio; creating custom QR coded stickers for retailers and lots more… limited only by our collective imaginations)

And for that we need your help. Building on the model of the Oxford Open Data Hack Day that was held in Oxford last year, on 25th June we’ll be in the space about the Fairtrade Shop on Cornmarket from 10am – 4pm to create interesting things with open fair trade data.

And we need you. We’re after hackers, coders, designers, people to help pull together data from our mapping volunteers and more.

We’ll be laying on food and refreshments. So – if you want to turn your skills to a project that can make a real difference – drop Tim a line: tim@practicalparticipation.co.uk and get involved.


EU leaders congratulate 1,000 Fair Trade Towns while the European Commission re-thinks EU policies

June 7, 2011

European Union leaders have spoken out for Fair Trade and congratulated the Fair Trade Towns movement as it reaches its 1000th Fair Trade Town. On Saturday 4 June 2011 Spain’s capital city Madrid joins the UK Prime Minister David Cameron’s constituency Witney, amongst others, in reaching the status of the 1000th Fair Trade Town world wide, most of them in the EU. On this festive occasion the Fair Trade movement calls on the European Commission to reflect the EU citizens´ views in its upcoming legislative and policy proposals.

Mr Jerzy Buzek, President of the European Parliament, said: “Let me (…) congratulate you on the Fair Trade Towns campaign with almost 1000 Fair Trade Towns worldwide involved, the majority being in the EU. This is a perfect example of good cooperation between ! local authorities, NGOs, volunteers and consumers, all in support of Fair Trade (…) Fair Trade is not about charity: it is about making trade work for development, in particular marginalized producers and workers in the South”.

Mr Staffan Nilsson,President of the European Economic and Social Committee, said:I would (..) like to congratulate the community of Fair Trade Towns campaign connecting over one thousand local communities, and showing an excellent example of good cooperation between different actors all supporting Fair Trade. (…) Fair Trade has shown to be an important and effective contributor to poverty reduction, socially and economically empowering small scale producers.”

Ms Mercedes Bresso, President of the Committee of the Regions, said: “I am extremely happy to see that today 1000 cities, many of them members of the CoR (Committee of the Regions), are part of the Fair Trade movement. (…) The CoR is delighted with the development of Fair Trade and the growing readiness of Europe’s municipalities and regions to introduce environmental and social criteria into public procurement. This readiness is all the more important in the current financial and economic crisis”.

► Click HERE for the full texts of the congratulatory statements and photos of the three EU leaders.

The Fair Trade Towns movement started when the people in the small English market town of Garstang declared their community the world’s first Fair Trade Town at a public meeting in April 2000. This has grown to a worldwide movement that will reach 1000 on Saturday 4 June, most of them in the European Union. At 14h local time, the following municipalities will jointly declare as Fair Trade Towns: Kumamoto (Japan, the first Fair Trade Town in Asia), Greenwich (Connecticut, USA), Herne (Germany), Delft (The Netherlands), Kontich and Bilzen (Belgium), Madrid (Spain), Rutherglen and Cambuslang (Scotland, UK), as well as Witney (England, UK, constituency of Mr David Cameron, UK Prime Minister).

Mr David Cameron, as Member of Parliament for Witney (England, UK) congratulated the Fair Trade Town campaign in his constituency: “I am a big supporter of the Fairtrade Foundation – it is through trade we can help people to pull themselves out of poverty and ensure farmers and other producers get a fair price for their produce. Therefore, I am delighted that Witney has gained Fairtrade status and very proud that it is the 1000th international Fairtrade town. I look forward t! o visiting a fair-trade market in the near future."

The large number of Fair Trade Towns in the European Union reflects the increasing support of EU citizens and elected officials to Fair Trade. The sale of Fairtrade-certified products continued to report strong growth in 2010, with leading EU Member States being UK (40%, to £1.17bn), Germany (27%, to 340 million EUR) and Netherlands (37% – to 119.4 million EUR). As stated by the conclusions of a recent European Commission opinion poll “Europeans cannot be considered passive consumers: social and ethical concerns are among their criteria when buying a product or a service. This may need to be factored into decision-making relating to future trade policy priorities”.

The European Commission is expected to issue a number of EU policy and legislative proposals before the end of 2011 on trade and development, sustainable consumption and public procurement. The EU current policies and legislation date back from before the entry into force of the Treaty of Lisbon. Article 3 of the new EU Treaty lays down that free and fair trade, sustainable development and poverty reduction are objectives of the European Union in its relations with the wider world.

The EU Institutions have already recognised the added value of Fair Trade in contributing to sustainable development. “The European Commission should now put in place a well-coordinated policy environment that enables consumers and public authorities across the EU, as well as marginalised producers and workers in the South, to choose Fair Trade”, stated Sergi Corbalán, Executive Director of the Fair Trade Advocacy Office.

To mark the 1000th Fair Trade Town, a large number of individuals, organisations and Fair Trade Towns have signed up to a statement calling on G-20 leaders to ‘Make Trade Fair’, ahead of the G-20 Agricultural Ministers meeting to be held in Paris on 22-23 June 2011. The statement calls for action to ensure the current food system and agricultural trade flows contribute to, rather than hinder, sustainable agriculture and food security, in the South and in the North. This statement comes at an appropriate time also for the EU decision-making process as the EU Commissioners for Trade (Mr Karel De Gucht) and Development (Mr Andris Piebalgs) are expected to issue a joint policy EC proposal on trade and development before the end of 2011.

The Fair Trade movement has repeatedly argued that trade will not work for development unless the EU trade and development policies go further than the “business as usual” trade negotiations and development aid. “We call on the European Commission to look at the real practices of how International Trade is conducted, and put in place EU policies to encourage companies and consumers to make trade work for development”, said Sergi Corbalán.

The Fair Trade Advocacy Office speaks out for Fair Trade and trade justice with the aim to improve the livelihoods of marginalised producers and workers – especially in the South. The office is a joint initiative of Fairtrade International, the European Fair Trade Association (EFTA) and the World Fair Trade Organization-Europe (WFTO-Europe). These networks bring together over 2 million Fair Trade producers from more than 60 countries, 20 labelling initiatives, hundreds of specialized Fair Trade importers, 3,000 world shops and more than 100,000 volunteers.More information under: www.fairtrade-advocacy.org

Contact: Hilary Jeune – Fair Trade Advocacy Office. Rue Fernand Bernier 15 – 1060 Brussels – Belgium. Tel: +32 (0) 2 543 19 23. Email: jeune.


11th June Debate at WDM Conference in Oxford: Taking the biscuit: Is Fairtrade working?

June 6, 2011

Africa: exploitation and resistance

On the 11th June as part of the World Development Movement’s ‘ Africa: Exploitation and Resistance’ conference a panel will be taking place on the theme ‘Taking the biscuit: Is Fairtrade working?’. A description of the panel is below. The exact timing of this panel is not detailed on the WDM site.

Participation in the WDM conference is free, but registration is essential. You can register online at http://www.wdm.org.uk/africa-conference

Saturday 11th June
11am-6pm, Wesley Memorial Methodist Church,
New Inn Hall Street, Oxford OX1 2DH

Panel: Taking the biscuit: Is Fairtrade working?

The retail value of Fairtrade products in 2010 was over £1 billion in the UK alone. Fairtrade has gone mainstream, but is it really making an impact on poverty? Looking beyond controversial decisions over certification for Nestlé products, this session will debate the Fairtrade model and whether it can deliver economic justice and sustainable development.

  • Sophi Tranchell, managing director of Fairtrade chocolate company, Divine
  • Deborah Doane, director of the World Development Movement
  • Firoze Manji, editor in chief, Pambazuka News

FAIR TRADE AT FRONTIERS – SPEAKER EVENT with MARYAM BIBI

June 4, 2011

1st July 2011 – 7pm – 9pm – Quaker Meeting House, St Giles, Oxford. Free entry. Refreshments provided. All welcome.

Maryam Bibi, founder and director of Khwendo Kor, will be talking about the connections between fair trade, education and empowerment, peace and environmental sustainability in the Tribal Areas and former North West Frontier Province of Pakistan. Maryam, together with three women friends, established Khwendo Kor (Pashto for ‘Sister’s Home’) in 1993. The organisation now works in over 300 villages to create strong and progressive communities.

The session will start with refreshments at 7.00pm, followed by an introduction and short video about the work of Khwendo Kor. Maryam will speak, followed by time for questions and answers and general discussions and further refreshments and conversation.

You can find out more about Khwendo Kor and Maryam’s work in many articles online: http://www.google.co.uk/search?q=maryam+bibi

Organised by Oxford City Fair Trade Coalition (OFTC) and UK Friends of Khwendo Kor (FROK) and with support from Oxford Quaker Meeting. Find out more at http://www.oxfairtrade.org.uk and http://www.frok.org.uk/.

A poster is attached that you can use to promote this event. Please circulate the details above to any networks you feel may be interested.

Maryam Bibi Event Poster-email 1.pdf


Fairtrade at St Michaels seeking part-time assistant shop manager

June 3, 2011

JOB VACANCY

TEMPORARY PART-TIME ASSISTANT SHOP MANAGER

This independent fairtrade shop in central Oxford is looking to appoint a part-time assistant shop manager from mid-August 2011. We expect this appointment to be for six months only.

We are looking for someone with a proven enthusiastic commitment to the principles and promotion of fair trade. The Assistant Manager will be responsible, on days worked, for organising and overseeing the smooth running of the shop, and for working with volunteers to maximise sales and deliver a high level of customer satisfaction.

Average hours per week: 19
Normal days of work: Tuesdays, Thursdays and alternate Saturdays

For a full job description and application form, please call in at the shop or email the secretary at fair-trade@btconnect.com (heading your email ‘assistant manager post’)

Closing date for applications extended to Tuesday June 14th


Minutes of Fairtrade Coalition Meeting

June 2, 2011

Dear all,

Please find below minutes of yesterday’s coalition meeting. In particular:

  • Make sure you have 25th June in your diary for our Fairtrade mapping event – and if you can offer any support with preparing for this, contact Sabita on yourfairtradecity
  • Note the Maryam Bibi talk on 1st July. More details coming soon.
  • Our next full meeting will be 6th July, 4.30 at the Town Hall.

Attached is a draft image with a Make Trade Fair message to share as part of our contribution to the celebration of the 1000th Fairtrade town this weekend, which Witney will be part of. Comments welcome. I’ll otherwise send this to the Fairtrade Towns Campaign over the weekend and it will be available for you to share with your networks by e-mail, facebook etc.

All best wishes

Tim

Minutes

Wednesday 1st June – Oxford City Fairtrade Coalition

4.30 – 6pm

Town Hall, Jury Room.

Invited: All Coalition members. Guests and newcomers welcome.

Present: Sebastian Johnson, Mike McKinley (Chair), Sabita Banerji, Patricia Wright, Susan King, Tim Davies, Judith Condor-Vidal

1. Apologies
John Coyle, Elizabeth Whitwick, Joyce Day, Maranda, Carol Wills, Rachel Smith

2. Minutes of the last meeting (available here)

  • We noted the letter of support from the City of Oxford for World Fair Trade Day that Sebastian arranged from the Mayor. It can be seen on our website.
  • We noted that Patricia and Judith raised World Fair Trade Day at the co-operative AGM which was on the same day.
  • Sebastian reported back on enquiries prompted by Patricia into Fairtrade vending machines. With the upcoming renewal of the catering contract for the Town Hall in November exploration was being made of having Fair Trade products in snack and hot-drink vending machines in the Town Hall. It is hoped this will happen and the coalition should monitor this.

3. Your Fair Trade City Plan and Status Renewal

  • Sabita reported on progress towards the 25th June Your Fairtrade City Day which has included a slot on BBC Radio Oxford last Friday, creation of powers to promote the event, and an e-mail campaign also.
  • A venue is yet to be secured, but Sabita is talking with the Oxford Students Union, and the idea of focusing attention on Bonn Square with the map on a stall outdoors, and contacting the Baptish Church or Wesley Memorial Church as backup inside venues was raised.
  • Right now volunteers are needed both to be present on the day, and to help with preparation. If you are able to take part on the 25th, or in advance, please e-mail yourfairtradecity as soon as possible so we can identify what scale the event can be.
  • We agreed the important focus must be on mapping available Fairtrade retailers.
  • Action: Sabita to continue preparation for the event
  • Action: Tim will work to create a template for reporting available products
  • Action: All to help find volunteers and let Sabita know about their availability on the 25th
  • Action: Tim and Sabita to prepare paragraph on Your Fairtrade City and other event for Council’s internal ‘Council Matters’ newsletter.

4. 1000th Fairtrade Town project

  • This Saturday will see Witney amongst the 1000th Fair Trade Towns being celebrated across the globe. We’ve been asked to send in a photo stating “Make Trade Fair” as part of the celebration.
  • Action: Tim to prepare and send in photo.

5. Accounts and finances

  • Mike reported that Elizabeth is not currently able to act as treasurer.
  • Motion proposed by Tim Davies: “To appoint Mike McKinley as Interim Treasurer and for him to be empowered to take such steps as are necessary to manage the finances of the coalition, including becoming the key contact and signatory with the co-operative bank.”
  • Motion passed.

6.Miriyam Bibi event

  • Ian has sent a proposal for the structure of the event. We need to start work on publicity. Patricia has been liasing with Elma on the venue which will be the Meeting House from 7pm for 7.30 on the 1st July. The event will be titled “Fairtrade at the Frontier” and will use the sub-title “Women talking to the Taliban”. It will be a co-hosted event between FROK (Friends of Khwendo Kor) and OFTC.
  • Mike is able to chair the event.
  • Action: Tim to create poster for the event and to raise awareness online. A brief e-mail text will be circulated shortly.
  • Action: All to promote the event to networks they have available.

7. Insurance

  • We do not currently have any insurance in place. The Fairtrade Foundation offer insurance for £125/year through a social enterprise CaSE.
  • Action: Mike to arrange insurance for the Coalition by 25th June to cover our upcoming event.

8. Any other business

  • Mike reminded us of the upcoming seminar in September. More details and planning need to be arranged soon.
  • We discussed how we should respond to requests or opportunities to have stalls at upcoming events, including the Cowley Road Carnival. Given our current resources, and our strategic goals to promote awareness of Fairtrade and why Fairtrade matters we discussed whether we should instead focus on making sure stalls already offering Fairtrade products at events were ‘loud and proud’ about that fact – perhaps by offering stalls posters and display elements to use.
  • We discussed whether a ‘tick box’ might be added to applications for licenses of hold street stalls or other events asking whether the organisers were planning to have Fairtrade products on sale as (a) this would help encourage consideration of Fairtrade and (b) could help us collect useful data to report back in future.
  • Rachel Cappel (working with us on the EU project) may be able to advise more on the possibility of this.
  • We noted Cowley Road Carnival is shortly after our Your Fairtrade City event and may be a good time to distribute the map if we have been able to produce it.
  • Actions: Mike to explore possibility of such a tick-box with Rachel.
  • Action: Sebastian to find contact details for Cowley Road Carnival organisers.

9. Date of Next Meeting

Make Trade Fair 1000th Town Graphic-email.pdf