An Alternative Gift Fair engages your community in creating a just economy and realizing the impact of our consumer choices-- all while celebrating with friends! What more could you ask for from an event?
- Reach out to those who might be interested in planning, like social action or youth groups.
- Meet to decide on a time, place, and possible theme. Consider which date you think people will be interested in buying gifts, which groups will have tables, what to sell, and next steps.
- Reserve the location. Add extra time for set-up, brewing coffee, and clean-up.
- Order products you are selling well ahead of time. Equal Exchange's Interfaith Program guarantees shipping within ten business days.
- Get the word out, like through bulletins, announcement boards, flyers, and e-mails to groups. Advertise to those outside your congregation through newspapers, Facebook pages, and posting flyers. Share specifics- for example, share the theme, unique gifts they can buy, and any food that will be there.
- Educate and engage people in the issues. The booth(s) can have educational information displayed, there could be a workshop using an activity modified from Equal Exchange's Win-Win Solutions curriculum, a laptop with a video like Black Gold can be running, or there could be speakers such as nearby farmers and artisans during the event.
- Have a fun gift market!
Ideas & Tips:
- Make sure there aren't any scheduling conflicts.
- Invite people from neighboring faith communities.
- Have a theme for the event or for individual tables.
- Decorate products and put together as gift in either recycle-able gift bags or fairly traded gift baskets.
- Invite bands or musicians from your congregation to play live music.
- Have Equal Exchange's Organic Hot Chocolate available for people for free or for sale.
- Bring in food from a local restaurant, café, or pizza shop, or have people bring appetizers and dishes that use fairly traded products. See scrumptious recipe ideas using our fairly traded goods here.
- Hold a coffee and chocolate pairing and have the coffees and chocolates available for sale as gifts.