My Neighbor And Me sells fair trade products from Gambia, Guatemala, and Peru, as
well as products from the local community.
Jesus said that we are to love our neighbor as ourself. What does this mean today?
I hate poverty and I am pretty sure that you do too.
The trading relationship now know as “Fair Trade” began in the 1940s in
response to witnessing extraordinary women creating beautiful hand-craft
items in spite of the many challenges that they faced.
"Fair trade traces its roots to 1946 when Edna Ruth Byler, a volunteer for
Mennonite Central Committee (MCC), visited an MCC sewing class in Puerto
Rico where she discovered the talent the women had for creating beautiful
lace and the extraordinary poverty in which they lived despite their hard
work. She began carrying these pieces back to the United States to sell and
returning the money back to these groups directly. Her work grew into Ten
first fair trade shop in 1958 and is now the largest fair trade retailer in
North America. In 1949, Sales Exchange for Refugee Rehabilitation and
Vocation(SERRV International) began helping refugees in Europe recover from
World War II. Today, they support artisans in more than 35 countries.”
Alleviating poverty starts with compassion followed closely behind with
creativity. Operating a fair trade gift shop in a small town is taking
lots of creativity to make it sustainable long-term But I am confident
that it is possible to help alleviate poverty for third world artisans
while also providing an unique shopping experience.