Fair trade: Everyday in Lent
Today is the first day of lent. You may have already, like me, decided to give up treats for the next forty days. Or you might be taking up something fabulous like the 40Acts challenge. Or perhaps giving or taking things up for Lent is not even on your radar! Whatever your pre-Easter plans we at Good Taste would love it if all our customers and supporters made a special effort to live more ethically over the next 40 days. Below are a series of 20 challenges (the second installment is coming soon!). They don’t need to be done in order or daily and some may really not work for you or your family; they are just ideas of ways you can make a difference to other people this Lent. We’d love it if you could give it a go and please do let us know how you’re getting on!
- Pick up a TASTE water bottle from the shop and pledge to fill it with your loose change over the course of lent. When it’s full drop it into the shop and all the money you have collected will go straight to the TASTE charity. Which they use to provide life changing access to water for people in rural Nigeria.
- Buy a bag of fair trade coffee and commit to making this a regular habit. If you already use fair trade coffee give the bag away to someone who doesn’t and encourage them to change too.
- Pledge to walk everywhere today, even if it’s hard. Many people in developing countries walk miles every day to fetch water or get to school. Our reliance on our cars is affecting our waistlines, our local environment and having a knock on effect on the global weather, which affects those living in poverty.
- Smile at everyone you pass today and say hello. People may be feeling sad or lonely – your smile could make them feel better.
- Turn off lights today or even better have an electricity free day and put what you would have spent in your TASTE bottle.
- Bake a cake using fair trade sugar and share it with people at your office, church, neighbourhood or school. Make a point in telling them it is a fair trade cake! Need recipe inspiration? Try one of the recipes on our website.
- Shop local. Give the supermarkets a wide berth today and buy everything you need from local, independent shops.
- Pray for someone in need today. If you have never prayed before in your life then Justpray is a helpful website to get you started.
- Buy something beautiful for someone you love just because you love them. You could buy them a piece of handcrafted jewellery from Good Taste and support the crafts person who made it for you through ensuring they are paid fairly for their work.
- Clear out your wardrobe and donate anything you no longer want to your local charity shop and warm things to your local homeless shelter.
- Buy a bag of rice in the shop to support our ‘rice challenge’. Every 90kg sold pays for a child in Malawi to go to secondary school for one year.
- Recycle your rubbish. Banish laziness and commit to recycling as much of your rubbish as possible.
- Plan your birthday cards today. Look through your diary and make a note of all your friends and family who have a birthday in the coming months. Then commit to buying them a fair trade card from Cards From Africa and then come into the shop and bulk buy what you need. The employees of Cards From Africa are the heads of their orphaned households. They use the money they earn (which is 4 to 5 times the average Rwandan’s $1 a day) to feed and clothe their younger brothers and sisters, as well as purchase medicine and provide school tuition when needed. (If you want to be really organised you could write and address them all today too!)
- Phone someone for a chat today rather than texting or emailing them.
- Talk to your children or a child you know about fair trade and show them the fair trade mark. Helping to educate young children about will enable them to make positive buying choices as they grow up.
- Buy a bar of fair trade chocolate for your next door neighbour – it might be the beginning of a great friendship. (If you’re feeling really generous you could buy one for everyone on your street!
- Spread the fair trade word! Get on social media and share one of our posts about fair trade and why it’s important! Here is a suggestion: 5 easy ethical shopping changes can make today.
- Hold an open house – open your front door, put a sign on your gate and invite people in for a cup of fair trade tea. You might get no-one, you might get one person, you might get a houseful! Be open and generous with your home today.
- Get organised for Easter and buy your fair trade Easter eggs early (we sold out completely last year!). We have a great selection of large and small eggs available. As well as the “Real Easter Egg” which contains an activity booklet about the Easter Story.
- As the weather gets warmer think about adjusting your thermostat or turning off your heating altogether. If it is earlier than you would normally do this then put the money you would have spent in your TASTE bottle too!!
Here is Part Two of our 40 challenge. Fair trade: Everyday in Lent.