St Silas Episcopal Church has been a Fairtrade church since 2005 and a member since 2010.
“At St Silas we see our passion for fair trade as flowing out of our faith in a generous God who has loved us in sending Jesus Christ and calls us now to love our neighbours. The fair trade activity has become embedded in our wider justice and community work and is generally an easy and obvious choice for people who visit the church.”
Our fair trade group is very informal and consists of volunteers who help run our fair trade stall. St Silas has been running a regular fair trade stall for over twenty years and has been a Fairtrade Church for 16 years. We aim to encourage the church to consider fair trade beyond buying from the stall by hosting occasional specific events and including interviews in the services during Fairtrade Fortnight and through regular posts on the church Facebook group. The stall stocks goods from Traidcraft and JTS and on occasions other fair trade suppliers such as Bala Sport.
In normal times it is run at least twice a month after the church services and is extremely well supported (in recent years it has regularly achieved £10k+ pa in sales) with the introduction of card payment facilities really boosting this. Through 2020 we switched to monthly virtual stalls with goods delivered to those who ordered. We have also run three appeals for support which have enabled us to donate a considerable amount of rice to a local foodbank around Harvest time, a full car load of fair trade goods to the City Mission in the lead up to Christmas and to local schools more recently to help with the delivery of food parcels to vulnerable families.
We sell lots and lots of Kilombero Rice, we were the first church to sell a tonne of Kilombero Rice and that was 6 years ago so we must be well over two tonnes now; we also sell plenty of chocolate!
What does St Silas Episcopal Church think about membership?
“We joined the Scottish Fair Trade Forum to show our commitment as a Fairtrade Church and be part of the wider work to promote Fair Trade in Scotland.”