Erinn, 22, is a masters student at the University of Edinburgh who volunteers at the Forum.
1. When did you first find out about Fair Trade?
I first learned about fair trade during my undergrad semester abroad in Geneva, Switzerland. One of my classes covered corporate social responsibility. From there, I developed an interest in the fair treatment of workers and did my own research through magazines and documentaries. When I learned about the Scottish Fair Trade Forum, I knew that volunteering here would be an ideal way to take action on an issue that mattered to me.
2. Why do you think Fair Trade is important?
When millions of factory workers and farmers are exploited around the world, it feels almost impossible to make a positive impact on the lives of these individuals. That’s where fair trade comes in. By purchasing fair trade products, consumers can feel confident that they have made a small contribution to supporting companies that prioritize workers’ well-being and dignity. In the United States, where I grew up, we often talk about ‘voting with our dollar’, or only frequenting businesses that promote our values. When I purchase from fair trade retailers, I can rest assured that my money is not supporting practices that take advantage of vulnerable workers.
3. What are you doing for Fairtrade Fortnight?
I have been working primarily on the communications aspect of SFTF’s Fairtrade Fortnight program. I’ve been involved with promoting our events and producer visits on different media platforms. Doing advocacy work at the Forum has been rewarding and allowed me to learn even more about fair trade.