Tag Archives: Fair Trade

What Your Clothes Say About You

Picture yourself.

Fashionably sporty and ready to join some friends for a picnic. Thrilled you have a new shirt that shows your sense of style and good taste. What else does it say about you?

This particular stone-washed shirt shows a surfer at sunset. You like the ocean. You like to surf. You’re romantic. You wear it proudly. The brand is prominently displayed. PATAGONIA!

Jay Coen Gilbert BLAZON LAURELSYou chose this brand intentionally because you commend their values. You like what they stand for. You want to support businesses doing well AND doing good. You loved their newsworthy and revolutionary campaign, “Don’t Buy This Jacket.” Their owner, Yvon Chouinard, wrote a book called “Let My People Go Surfing” and trusted his employees to manage their own schedules. You admire his commitment to being a good boss. He started 1% for the Planet where Patagonia, and other companies, pledge to give 1% of their total income to help NGO’s working toward environmental and conservation solutions.  You are proud to wear Patagonia because you TRUST the brand, their business ethics and their values. Wearing this brand makes you a good citizen for all the world to admire.

Patagonia

Patagonia is one example of an honorable and sustainable business. They clearly care about people, planet and profits. Their company’s mission statement is “Build the best product, do no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.” Read more about their philosophy on Becoming A Responsible Company.

iStock_000009204387SmallH&M

Another company is H&M who are leading the pack in fair living wages for garment workers. They also care about animal welfare by a public commitment stating “We care about animal welfare and endangered species. We’ve banned the use of real fur in our products for years, and don’t test any of our own brand cosmetics on animals.” For a full list of their corporate social responsibility commitments, check out these Conscious Actions.

TOMS

TOMS is one of the first to launch a buy one, give one model. One for you and one for a child in need. Blake Mycoskie wrote an inspirational book, “Start Something That Matters,” that outlined his transformation into retail as a social entrepreneur. He wanted to do something to help children worldwide after he saw the poor conditions in which they lived. He thought, I could open a non-profit and get donations. Then, he thought some more and found a way to help 3rd world economies, their children in need and create a viable business model. “I’ve learned that the keys to poverty alleviation are education and jobs. And we now have the resources to put investment behind this,” says Blake Mycoskie. (Source: TOMS Sets Out To Sell A Lifestyle, Not Just Shoes in Fast Company)

Vote with your Dollar$

~ Every time you purchase from Patagonia, you are helping our planet.

~ Every time you shop at H&M, you are ensuring fair wages for people employed worldwide.

~ Every pair of shoes you buy at TOMS will also supply a pair of shoes to a child in need.

What other companies do you support that are “doing good and doing well?”

Consider, not buying at all

Or only buy what you need. Not making a purchase is also a statement about your values and how you choose to live your life. If you do decide to buy something new, why not buy clothing you are proud to wear AND support a company you trust?

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Food & Beverage

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Capitalism. Consumerism. Consumption.

Capitalism. Consumerism. Consumption.

Americans … It’s in our nature to buy, buy, buy. Even after 9/11, as we mourned, our president asked us to go make purchases to save the economy. Capitalism is the basis of our system. We are bombarded with commercials and bill boards to increase our list of wants. Brand-placements have been subtly put in the movies to reach our subconscious. Every magazine offers a plethora of ‘things’ we must buy! If we could only have ____, we would be rich, thin or happy. It saddens me that we have built our self-esteem on what we have rather than the authentic relationships we nurture. This may be the environment we grew up in but it doesn’t have to be our reality.

What guides your purchasing decisions?

Green products

  • What is the best product?
  • What is the best price?
  • What is trendy?
  • What do the Jones’ have?
  • Is there free delivery?
  • What colors are available?

Now is the time to THINK DEEPER as a consumer and as a human being!

Have you thought about?

Green energy

  • What materials were necessary to build your coffee maker?
  • Who assembles your child’s Aurora doll?
  • How much water was needed to make your carpet?
  • How much electricity was used in producing your car?
  • How much waste was produced while making your wide-screen television?

All the questions listed above relate to the Supply Chain. These are valid and essential questions.

CALL TO ACTION #1

Consider every dollar you spend a vote!  When you vote for products made with values of sustainability, you will be a driving force in inspiring companies to do the ‘right thing.’

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Poverty Alleviation

Poverty Alleviation

We cordially invite you to join our Kiva Lending Team to fund micro-loans that help struggling Third-World entrepreneurs have a better chance for success. This is a small gesture that can make a grand difference in others’ lives. Inspired by the Bottom of the Pyramid theories of C.K. Prahalad, we want to be an example for others and create a legacy of compassion and contribution.

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The Republic of Tea

The Republic of Tea
This is a great example of a company who is doing well and doing good!  Please support The Republic of Tea mission to help Room to Read build a library in South Africa for well deserving kids. They will donate $1 per tin purchased!

Excerpt taken from Room to Read web site.

“The Republic of Tea, the innovative company that sparked a revolution of specialty and premium teas, chose Room to Read as its nonprofit partner for their new tea line for children called Little Citizens’ Herb Teas. The Fair Trade Certified teas, which are naturally caffeine-free and organic-Rooibos based, offers three flavors: Strawberry Vanilla Tea, Tangerine Tea and Apple Cherry Tea. For every tin of Little Citizens’ Herb Teas sold, The Republic of Tea will contribute $1 to Room to Read in its goal to establish 100 libraries, including a minimum of two bi-lingual libraries for underprivileged children in South Africa. Look out for the teas and complementary accessory line in specialty and natural markets nationwide.”

 

PHOTO CREDITS: iStock Photo

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