As we are celebrating Fair Trade Month, it is important to recognize how many different Fair Trade products are now on the market. From Fair Trade vodka to sugar to shoes, it is easy to shop ethically and for your whole family. Autonomie Project carries a line of Fair Trade and organic Children’s and Baby clothes called Little Green Radicals. But just as any other Fair Trade product, the Little Green Radicals has a heartwarming behind the scenes story.
Assisi Garments produced our initial order of children and baby items called Little Green Radicals. Assisi is located in Tirupur, India, where due to society standards, women don’t have many options to provide for their families. Also, in India, as many places throughout the world, people with disabilities such as deaf or blind are often not employed. In walks, Assisi which was founded in the mid 1990’s by Franciscan Sisters. It began as a non-profit Fair Trade factory only employing deaf and dumb workers. They are part of the World Fair Trade Organization and use Fair Labeling Organization Certified cotton.
As Fair Trade and organic cotton demand increased, it grew to employ “300 underprivileged women and 120 physically challenged people,” a population that is largely ignored by society, businesses, and the government. The many workers and farmers of Assisi are paid a Fair Trade Premium, receive health care at community clinics, and are trained in Fair Trade benefits. The workers and farmers are fully informed what Fair Trade is and why it is important throughout the world.
Assisi also believes in their commitment to the physically challenged and uses profits from the clothing to run schools for the deaf across the country, retirement homes, orphanages, and a hospital specifically for leprosy, which is an issue in India. Recently, Assisi has also used the profits from Fair Trade cotton and clothing to build an Aids/HIV clinic and a cancer treatment facility in Northern India.
Purchasing a Little Green Radicals garment not only provides ethical work for otherwise ignored populations in India, but it promotes healthy organic cotton and funds amazing schools and hospitals for those suffering from serious diseases or disabilities. Assisi is providing a better life for their workers and farmers, and improving the education and quality of life for those who are normally shunned by society including lepers, orphans, and the terminally ill. They are employing the “unemployable” and using the profits to better the entire society. These are truly your Fair Trade dollars at work.
GIVEAWAY: In honor of October being Fair Trade Month, we are giving away a Little Green Radicals item! Head over to our Facebook to win a children’s or baby garment our Assisi Fair Trade workers produced! Our last Facebook status is a link to our blog. Enter our giveaway by sharing our blog post. Just hit “share” underneath our blog’s link on Facebook! Also, be sure to check the website for a special discount on Fair Trade Children’s Clothing!