Support fair trade diamonds and gold

By staff writers
May 26, 2009
Guard at an illegal diamond mine in Angola

Reserves of diamonds and gold are often the most valuable natural assets in developing areas of the world. The total global market in diamonds is worth around £7 billion each year, and the gold trade is similarly lucrative. There are big problems associated with this industry however.

Civil wars in countries such as Angola, Sierra Leone and the Congo have often been funded by the sale of ‘conflict diamonds’. Rebel groups and corrupt governments have funded wars and atrocities from the sale of diamonds. It is estimated that around 3.7 million people have died in such conflicts.

The condition miners work in is often very poor too. Miners are not paid a fair wage, and they often work excessively long shifts. The communities miners live in suffer from a lack of development, and the standard of living remains low. Mining companies often exploit the natural resources around mines and are not always required to return the land to a habitable condition.

Major relief and development charity Oxfam runs a charity gift scheme called Unwrapped. It seeks to connect the poorest people in the world with those who can help them financially. Oxfam have set up a charity gift that enables you to support their efforts to help miners.

Diamond Charity Gift

This ‘24 carat gift’ goes to support the organisation and lobbying efforts of diamond mining communities. Your £98 will also contribute to a research fund that is devoted to assessing the impact of mining on communities.

Oxfam work in Southern Africa to assess the damage mining is doing to local people. They are also concerned with the overall well-being of communities and seek to improve livelihoods. This charity gift also comes with a free DVD and gift box.

Click here to explore how your diamond charity gift will help exploited miners through Oxfam.

Gold Charity Gift

This ‘gold standard’ charity gift goes to help gold miners who find themselves in a similar situation. Often miners are not fully aware of how they are being exploited, and different things could be for them. Oxfam mobilises communities by building awareness and support for unions and community action groups.

This particular charity gift will go to aid the plight of gold miners in West Africa. For £95 this gift will partly be spent on researching the nature of the mining industry, and how communities can best realise basic human rights.

Click here to explore how your gold charity gift will help exploited miners.

Buying either of these charity gifts will help lift developing countries out of poverty – one family or community at a time. Charity gifts are also a great way to celebrate a friend or loved one's birthday or anniversary. Show them you really care (in more ways that one), without giving unwanted clutter.

It is very quick and easy to buy a charity gift. All you do is visit the web site, pick a charity gift that suits your needs, and then choose a card with a personal message to send to your loved one on whose behalf you are buying the charity gift.

Click here to find out more about Oxfam Unwrapped

Although the views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent the views of Ekklesia, the article may reflect Ekklesia's values. If you use Ekklesia's news briefings please consider making a donation to sponsor Ekklesia's work here.