The following post is written by Kari Jones, author of A Fair Deal: Shopping for Social Justice.
What are your favorite stores to buy fair trade gifts from?
We are lucky in Victoria that we have a few fair trade stores to choose from. The one most people know about is 10 Thousand Villages downtown at 1009 Government Street, but there is also the Global Village Store at 527 Pandora Street. Those two are specifically fair trade stores, but there are lots of other stores in Victoria that carry fair trade products. Look for the Fair Trade or Fairtrade logos on items from toys to clothes to food.
In A Fair Deal, you mention that some women in Brazil use soda can tabs to crochet beautiful items, such as tops, bracelets and handbags. Have you ever made a gift using recycled items?
Making recycled gifts is the best! If you have the time and energy, you can make so many things. A friend of mine made a hammock out of some old rope hanging around in his shed, and another makes “upcycled” clothing out of old items hanging around her house. I make cards out of old cards, cutting and pasting to make something new. I think they look pretty good when I’m done.
Do you have any tips for how someone could politely suggest that their friends and family purchase fair trade gifts?
I think the best way to tell people about the benefits of fair trade is to show by example. Buying fair trade gifts for people opens the door for a conversation about how fair trade partnerships benefit the people who make the products, and also allows us to tell the people we are giving the gift to that we care about the world we live in.
Do you have any tips for fair trade holiday baking?
Fair trade chocolate is available in many stores, so that’s a great place to start. (And we all love chocolate, right?). You can also buy fair trade sugar, several different types of nuts, and some spices, like cinnamon and nutmeg. Adding some fair trade ingredients into your holiday baking makes it taste much yummier.
What are your favorite things about the holiday season?
The things I love best about the holiday season are all the times I spend with my family and friends. There’s Christmas morning, and the yummy breakfast we eat together (usually in our pajamas). There’s Hanukah, and the beautiful menorah, there’s lazing around on Boxing Day, the long walks we take over the holidays, the dinners we share with friends, and, of course, opening the first page of a new book to read. That’s one of the best things about the holidays.
A Fair Deal is available now!
Kari Jones is the author of numerous books for young readers and teens, including At the Edge of the World, a young adult novel. She lives on the west coast of Canada, where she enjoys exploring the coast by kayak with her husband and son and their dog, Tintin. For more information, please visit www.karijones.ca.