PUPILS of Aloeric Primary School are encouraging the community to follow in their footsteps and make the change to Fairtrade products and explore Melksham becoming a Fairtrade town.
For the past three years, pupils and staff at Aloeric Primary School have been taking part in the Fairtrade School Awards, making changes to products they use at the school and learning more about how Fairtrade helps farmers and workers in developing countries to get a better deal.
Sharing the school’s message for the community, year 2 teacher and Fairtrade officer for the school, Alison Hodges said, “By changing one small item of your weekly shop, like bananas or coffee, to a Fairtrade alternative, you can have a huge impact on farmers in other countries, helping them to get a better deal and more money for their work.
“We understand that families are under budget constraints, but by swapping one item you may not notice the difference. Who knows, the Fairtrade option may even be cheaper!
“Maybe one day we could look into Melksham becoming an accredited Fairtrade town. That’s something I would love to see happen.”
As well as encouraging the community to make changes to their shopping, the school is continuing to look for more ways they can help to make a difference, including becoming the first Wiltshire school to knowingly source Fairtrade uniform items.
“Continuing the tradition, year 6 leavers will be given hoodies as a farewell gift from the school in the summer – but for the first time, these hoodies will be made from Fairtrade cotton by Koolskools,” explained Alison. “We will be the first school in Wiltshire to knowingly source Fairtrade materials for our uniform. And after this, we would like to look at making other pieces of our uniform Fairtrade.”
Recently, the school took part in Fairtrade Fortnight, the annual national event aimed at raising awareness of Fairtrade products and the plight of farmers. A number of events took place during the two weeks including a cooking class hosted by The Farm Cookery School for key stage 2 pupils, selected by their peers as Fairtrade class representatives.
The school also took part in the’ 90kg Rice Challenge’ – selling 90kg bags of rice for £3 to raise £270 to give to a Malawi farmer to pay for one year of schooling for their child.
Currently Aloeric Primary is ranked as a ‘FairActive’ school, but pupils and staff are hoping all their efforts will help them progress to ‘FairAchiever’ by May, the highest award possible.