Today people around the world are celebrating fair trade day. It was wonderful this morning being with people who have worked for many years to create living wage jobs in Bangladesh for people who lacked access to markets and other opportunities. Through fair trade globally we’ve been introduced to such a wide array of handmade goods: baskets, woodcarvings, jewellery, embroidery, hand woven cloth, metal work, beading, not to mention chocolate and coffee!
What I particularly love is that fair trade is a dignified and sustainable way to change lives. People born in areas with less resources and less access to education and opportunity just want a chance. Fair trade is a way to make sure they get that chance.
At Basha, we take this a step further. Yes, your Basha purchase pays a woman a wage. But do you know all the other things it pays for? It pays for her to attend classes 5-6 days a week where she learns to read her own language, where she learns basic English, where she learns valuable life skills and things to help her develop her life. Her child is in day care on the premises, learning, being supported in school, receiving tutoring, eating nutritious snacks. She is earning annual leave, holiday bonuses, and other benefits including medical care. She is working in a safe, pleasant environment where she is treated as an integral part of Basha and where she is involved in decision making.
Additionally, your Basha purchase goes to creating more opportunities for other women in need of dignified work. We are diligent to maintain quality standards, to build the Basha brand, and to develop new products because we know that the number of women being exploited in Bangladesh or facing tremendous risk is huge, and we must always be growing in order to create jobs for them. We are thrilled with the 70+ women currently working with us, but the plight of so many others is always in our mind, driving us to do more and to do it well.
Every time you buy a Basha product, every time you tell your friends about us, every time you promote us on your facebook page, pinterest, instagram,… you are part of that too.
So thank you, Basha friends, supporters and purchasers. Your purchase really does make a difference!
“The world is indeed full of peril, and in it there are many dark places; but still there is much that is fair, and though in all lands love is now mingled with grief, it grows perhaps the greater.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers