Thursday, September 21, 2017 | Sherwood Park, Alberta. 18th in Canada, 4th in Alberta, and first in the Elk Island Public School District.

At the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, the plan was made to become a Fair Trade School. The people behind it all? A school group called T.A.V.O, which stands for Teens Against Violent Oppression. With an Educational Assistant as the adult leader, a small group of students, who voluntarily gave up their lunch hours for group meetings, were able to raise awareness regarding fair trade.

The club is not exclusively involved in fair trade, but also focuses on other social justice issues, particularly human trafficking. This year, however, students took a break from extensive fundraising and focused on fair trade — mainly the educational aspect of it. Speaking in school gatherings, selling fair trade goodies, and putting up advertisements, the group was able to meet its goals by the end of June 2017. A favorite event of the students was selling frozen fair trade bananas dipped in fair trade chocolate! The group of students was supported greatly by other teachers and staff members and found Strathcona Christian Academy to be a very welcoming place for their ideas.

The classroom education component proved to be one of the most successful parts of the campaign, thanks to great efforts from the school’s social studies teachers. Students in these classes showed enthusiasm for the topic and took on many creative projects, including melting and molding to create their own school-branded fair trade chocolates, which were sold at the school’s musical.

“It’s exciting to be able to celebrate the 4th Fair Trade School in Alberta, joining over 20,000 students who are standing up for farmers and workers around the world. The T.A.V.O students, Cindy Christensen, and Strathcona faculty and admin should be very proud of this accomplishment. Congratulations everyone!” Sean McHugh, Executive Director, Canadian Fair Trade Network

“Congratulations to Strathcona Christian Academy for becoming Canada’s 18th Fair Trade School! Your commitment to incorporate education about fair trade in classes and to raise awareness in the entire community is making a true positive difference in the life of farmers and workers in the global South.” – Loïc de Fabritus, Project Manager, Association québécoise du commerce équitable

“Strathcona Christian Secondary is the latest school to join the fair trade movement and to show solidarity with children in poorer countries. By teaching and raising awareness about the impact that Fairtrade has on millions of people’s lives in communities of the Global South, we’re helping to shape the citizens of tomorrow. Congratulations to everyone involved: you should be proud!” Mélissa Dubé, Outreach and Marketing Manager, Fairtrade Canada.

Categories: Blog Post