Announcing Fair Trade Campaigns
We are pleased to announce the launch of the Fair Trade Campaigns umbrella, the result of an extensive, collaborative planning process of Fair Trade Towns USA and Fair Trade Colleges & Universities. Fair Trade Campaigns will allow for better collaboration among organizations working to raise awareness and drive sales of Fair Trade products across the US. It represents a wide range of stakeholders in the Fair Trade movement, including organizers from large and small towns, faculty and students from colleges and universities, and NGOs such as the Fair Trade Federation, Catholic Relief Services Fair Trade, and Green America. By coming together and streamlining our efforts at the local, regional, and national levels, we can encourage current and declared campaigns to keep moving forward as well as create new opportunities and access points for people to engage in advocating for Fair Trade.
The mission of Fair Trade Campaigns is to grow a nationwide community of passionate, lifelong Fair Trade advocates who will inspire others to support equity in trade. Our organizing structure is one of shared governance in which steering committees of volunteers work with paid staff at Fair Trade USA to determine direction and strategy, and to execute campaign objectives. We recognize multiple Fair Trade labels and systems and uphold the importance of both broadening the market reach of Fair Trade and deepening Fair Trade values.
Fair Trade Campaigns currently encompasses Fair Trade Towns and Fair Trade Colleges & Universities; over the course of 2013 and 2014, we aim to include and support Fair Trade Schools, Congregations, Clubs, and Workplaces. We are designing tools to help campaign organizers, as well as developing criteria for these entities to earn Fair Trade status. At the same time, we are working to better gauge the impact of campaigns – including institutional procurement of Fair Trade products, increased availability and sales, and the reach of messaging via social media – on producers’ livelihoods worldwide.
We invite you to stay tuned for announcements as we launch these exciting innovations in our work, continuing our mission of empowering consumers in the US to support farmers and artisans in the developing world and bringing them opportunities for a better life.
Fair Trade Campaigns Joint Steering Committee
Ryan Scott McDonnell – Fair Trade Boston
April Linton – Author, Fair Trade from the Ground Up
Joan Harper – Fair Trade Los Angeles
Jessica Baltmanas – University of California, San Diego