WEST BRIDGEWATER, MA - June 24th, 2010 - Equal Exchange is expanding its unique organic and Fair Trade fundraising program for schools by teaming up with Ten Thousand Villages, the non-profit organization who helped pioneer the Fair Trade model over 50 years ago. Equal Exchange's fundraising program already featured a full-line of organic, Fair Trade food and beverages and enabled schools and community groups to raise funds for themselves while benefiting small-scale organic farmers around the globe. Thanks to this new partnership the fundraiser now also offers beautiful fairly traded gifts for the home and hand-made tree-free gift wrap. The expanded product offering increases the program's appeal and further demonstrates the connections between ourselves, our purchases and the people who grow and create products we use every day.
Equal Exchange's fundraising program is designed for elementary, middle and high schools and works both as an event or catalog sale. It is an easy way for PTAs and student groups to raise funds at a competitive margin (40%) while at the same time reinforcing social and environmental responsibility and encouraging global citizenship.
In addition to the organic, fairly traded coffees, teas, chocolates, cocoas, and healthy snacks from Equal Exchange the fundraiser now also offers items such as silk scarves from Nepal, tablecloths and glass pendants from India, and batik greeting cards from Thailand.
"I love how the Equal Exchange Fundraiser introduces children to the values of equity and sustainability while allowing parents and teachers to purchase everyday products that we all love. I hope to continue this fundraiser for many years to come!"
-Jackie DeLisi, Parent, The Brimmer and May School, Chestnut Hill MA
To complement the fundraiser Equal Exchange also offers a free, downloadable 16 unit curriculum, "Win Win Solutions", that helps demonstrate the link between personal actions and community efforts to create a more just and sustainable world. The curriculum incorporates participatory teaching methods and satisfies many basic U.S. curriculum standards for social studies, geography, math, economics, and other subjects.
About Equal Exchange
Equal Exchange has been a pioneer and U.S. market leader in Fair Trade since 1986 and is a full service provider of high quality, organic coffee, tea, chocolate, cocoa, and other products. Customers include grocery stores, restaurants, cafes, schools and places of worship nationwide. 100% of Equal Exchange products are fairly traded, benefiting more than 40 small farmer co-operatives in 22 countries around the world. In keeping with its Fair Trade mission Equal Exchange is a democratically organized worker-owned co-operative. Equal Exchange has been honored for its social entrepreneurship from Fast Company magazine, The Financial Times, WorldBlu and others.
About Ten Thousand Villages
A fair trade retailer, Ten Thousand Villages offers home and garden decor, jewelry, personal accessories and gift items rich in ancient global traditions. Ten Thousand Villages features products from more than 130 artisan groups in 38 countries via a network of more than 150 retail outlets throughout the United States. For more than 60 years, Ten Thousand Villages has established fair, long-term buying relationships in places where skilled artisans lack opportunities for stable income. Ten Thousand Villages is a nonprofit program of Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) and in the 1980's was a role model that helped to inspire the three co-founders of Equal Exchange.