If there’s a single expression to describe 2013 for us at FTOÉ, we’ve been busy undoubtedly says it all. We’ve seen a remarkable year filled with inspiring events from start to finish.
In collaboration with Credible Edibles we organized My Fair Valentine Cooking Class, a loving Fair Trade event, made possible by our sponsors Ten Thousand Villages Ottawa and Camino. It was a learning experience that helped boost our taste buds! We also held “The People and the Olive”, an inspiring event where our distinguished panelists, generous sponsors and our volunteers gathered around the theme of olive oil and Palestinian Fair Trade farmers to bring out discussion on Fair Trade, sustainability and diversity.
As usual last May was marked by our biggest event of the year, Take a Sip for Fair Trade, a wine and cheese event that brought together “Fair Trade and local foods to showcase the best of Ottawa and beyond.” Special thanks to our guest speakers: Paul Dewar, MP for Ottawa Centre who spoke about Conflict Free Minerals, and Henk van der Molen, our Fair Trade specialist from Camino.
June – July
At the end of June we attended the Community Cup 2013! In that spirit we were also present at City Hall for The 2nd Annual International Co-op Day Celebration, an exquisite and joyful event for family.
In terms of long-term development within FTOÉ, this summer saw us drafting our official constitution and governance documents, creating tremendous opportunities for organizational growth. With these mechanisms in place, we became equipped with the tools we needed to show the community that we’ll be sticking around long after we achieve our goal of Fair Trade Town status!
August – September
These two months were notorious for the Cumberland Farmers’ Market and the Brewer Farmers’ Market! Buying local and buying Fair Trade go hand in hand and as such, we feel quite at home spreading the word about the Fair Trade movement at local farmers’ markets!
Starting this summer, the school outreach team has been working on gathering and preparing educational resources and presentations. Canterbury High School’s Social Awareness Committee has partnered with FTOÉ this year to raise Fair Trade awareness in their school community – more updates to follow on their exciting projects! For more details, contact Meghan.
August was also marked by two landmark events: the formalization of our constitution and our first-ever annual Steering Committee election, bringing in incredibly hard-working and passionate directors for our many initiatives. Hurray!
FTOÉ was part of the University of Ottawa Volunteer Fair where our volunteers encountered some inspiring students and discussed Fair Trade. The month also included a yearly FTOÉ tradition: Wickedly Westboro. While getting into the Halloween spirit, we enjoyed many activities and took pride in rewarding our costume contest winner—all in the name of raising awareness for our cause!
We ended the year on a beautiful note with our last three events. The Ten Thousand Villages Festival Sale at the Ottawa Mennonite Church was the perfect opportunity to encounter new faces and spread the word about the importance of buying Fair Trade. Our Chair extraordinaire, Lia Walsh, also addressed a Human Rights class at Carleton University! What a perfect opportunity as Fair Trade and Human Rights go hand in hand!
Shop and Share with Ten Thousand Villages Ottawa is with no doubt the highlight of the end of year. Not only did we get to raise awareness about the Fair Trade movement, we also got the opportunity to help promote our longtime partners, Ten Thousand Villages Ottawa, the host of the event! Fair Trade BananaSanta organized a Facebook contest where two lucky Fair Trade Ottawa supporters, Stephanie and Marika, won candy canes and fine chocolates from Camino!
For more information about our events visit the Events page of our website!