Renfrewshire will celebrate a major milestone in its Fairtrade campaign with a weekend of events at the end of the month.
Two days of events will be held in Paisley to mark the tenth anniversary of Rainbow Turtle, Paisley-based Fair Trade charity, social enterprise and a key member of Renfrewshire’s Fairtrade Steering Group.
Over Friday 31 August and Saturday 1 September, a series of events will take place in Paisley Town Hall including the Scottish Fairtrade Forum’s national Campaign Day.
There will also be a business lunch, workshops for schoolchildren, a session on churches supporting Fairtrade and an evening celebration for volunteers and supporters which will feature Rainbow Turtle’s producer partners from the organisation Families Especiales (Special Families) from Nicaragua.
Renfrewshire Council Leader Mark Macmillan, who will open the weekend of events, said: “Renfrewshire has a strong reputation for being one of the leading areas in Scotland for supporting Fairtrade. Over these two days we’ll be celebrating that, in particular by marking the 10th birthday and major contribution of one of our key Fairtrade partners and champions, Rainbow Turtle.
“As well as looking back on the achievements so far, the weekend will aim to keep pushing Fairtrade forward by reaching out to new partners and supporters from all areas of the community particularly local businesses.”
As part of the celebrations Traidcraft will be bringing their Autumn roadshow to the town hall and CEO Paul Chandler will be speaking to local business representatives at the business lunch about the benefits of involving Fairtrade in the workplace under the topic ‘How being good can be good for business’. The lunch will be made with Fairtrade ingredients by local catering company Redss.
Also on Friday 31 August, local schoolchildren have been invited to workshops which will include a talk on Fairtrade from Rainbow Turtle’s Nicaraguan producer partners Families Especiales.
Paul Chandler will also be speaking at a churches event on Saturday 1 August which will explore the role of churches in Fairtrade.
Rainbow Turtle was established in 2002 by a group concerned with the promotion and development of Fair trade. It is made up of two distinct areas of activity. Rainbow Turtle Just Trading runs the shop in Paisley town centre as well as supplying Fairtrade products to schools, workplaces and other organisations across Scotland. Rainbow Turtle Charity works in partnership with developing world producers to raise the profile of fair trade.
Liz Cotton, of Rainbow Turtle said: “When we started Rainbow Turtle 10 years ago fair trade was hardly on the spectrum. Little did we know how far things would go over the last decade. Thanks to the many volunteers, customers, schools, churches, village and town groups and the local council who not only caught the vision but also took fair trade forward Renfrewshire is now seen as one of the flag ship regions in the Scottish fair trade campaign. Fair trade is such a simple concept but makes a huge difference to people on the other side of our world and is something we can all buy into. RainbowTurtle is more than just a shop, it changes lives and we need your continued support.”