St Andrews University achieved the Fair Trade and Sustainability Award in the 2021 Scottish Fair Trade Awards.
“During Fairtrade Fortnight 2021 we hosted four events with four different student societies. You can find all these on the Fairtrade Facebook page.
We also engaged the local Food Cooperative ‘The Tree’ to spread information about Fair Trade relating to female empowerment, fast fashion, social justice, and socio cultural aspects of the banana industry. The Tree also helped with spreading information about actions taken by the University and actions that individuals could take. Our Residential Services helped spreading this too through their meal boxes.
The University continues serving Fairtrade tea, coffee and juices at our cafes, distributing locally made face masks of Fairtrade cotton to our staff and students, and meeting quarterly with the Student Union President and the Fairtrade Steering Committee to keep up to date with Fair Trade action. We are also in regular contact with our Fairtrade community group, whom we support to increase engagement throughout the town.
Our future plans are to continue championing Fair Trade across the University, town, and wider community, seeking to improve our partnership with the initiative as we move forward to become a more sustainable institution.
Fairtrade Fortnight 2022 will be an opportunity for the University to highlight topics such as social justice and trade justice, and the importance of these in tackling the current climate and nature emergency. Many events will be taking place in collaboration with our town group and diverse student community to deliver exciting events to spread the message of Fairtrade. These events are still to be confirmed, all details will be posted in due course on our University Sustainability Platforms (see Facebook).
Engaging our staff, students and wider community with Fair Trade has for many years now been challenging. However, we are slowly beginning to see increased engagement with the initiative through conversations at the University around climate change, climate justice and trade justice.
The University was very pleased to accept the Fairtrade & Sustainability Award from the Scottish Fair Trade Forum in November last year. We are so proud to be part of this community and we want to help raise the profile of Higher Education institutions engaging with Fairtrade. Sadly, due to the Omicron outbreak we did not have the opportunity to celebrate our achievements in person, but we cannot wait to continue to campaign for Fairtrade during the February Fortnight, in 2022 and beyond”!
Photo credits: St Andrews University