Fair trade goods from Tearcraft reach landmark
Veteran pop legend Sir Cliff Richard has welcomed the 1000th volunteer to join an army of Christians who sell fairly traded goods from the developing world through Tearfund's fair-trade business Tearcraft.
Pauline Horwill, a member of Christ Church, Weston-Super-Mare, joined Sir Cliff, who is a Tearfund's Vice President, and 20 long-standing Tearcraft volunteers, for an presentation ceremony at its London headquarters celebrating the successes achieved during three decades of the fair trade catalogue.
Sir Cliff, who 30 years ago paraded along Oxford street wearing a sandwich board declaring the merits of fair trade, told volunteers that by selling just one fairly traded item they were helping to change one person's life.
"I want to congratulate you on reaching this milestone of 30 years and the 1000th volunteer. Through our involvement we are all playing a part in changing people's lives for the better and that's a miracle to me. Who knows where another 30 years might take us!"
Pauline Howell's said she had been motivated by her daughter's enthusiasm to become a volunteer for Tearcraft. She hoped her work 'would be a drop in the ocean, or a starfish returned to the sea for poor people.'
Maggie Hughes (59), a Tearcraft volunteer for the past 28 years, and a member of Temple Baptist Church, Pontypridd, said: "Through Tearcraft I have learned so much about the conditions in which poor people have to live and work. I am continually amazed at how very little can make a significant difference in people's lives."
Tearfund's acting General Director Graham Fairbairn, told the volunteers: "Talented individuals from the poorest communities would have little hope in getting a fair price for these beautiful products if it wasn't for Tearcraft and all the commitment that you bring to it."
The 30th anniversary Tearcraft catalogue contains inspirational products ethically sourced from skilled craftspeople, including stainless steel tableware, traditional wooden games and hanging baskets. By freeing poor producers from exploitation and helping to develop a market for their work, Tearcraft helps skilled craft workers in some of the world's poorest communities to regain their sense of dignity and achieve the basic standards of living.