Home' Napier Mail : December 6th 2011 Contents 11
NAPIER MAIL, DECEMBER 7, 2011
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Thirty-five years of fair trade
Helping nations: Trade Aid Napier manager Maureen
Kennedy has celebrated the store's 35th birthday with
50 Trade Aid volunteers.
Photo: CAROLYN VEEN
By CAROLYN VEEN
Watching hungry Tibetan refugees struggling to
find anyone to buy their beautiful hand-woven
rugs, tore at the heart strings of a Kiwi couple
who went on to pioneer fair trade in New Zealand
in the 1970s and set up the Trade Aid organis-
When the young couple, Richard and Vi
Cottrell, returned to New Zealand after two years
of voluntary work in India, their hearts were so
set on supporting the refugees that they bought
$1000 worth of carpets, hung them in a Christ-
church gallery and sold the lot within 15
With the help of 10 friends who shared a vision
to create a more just world , the Cottrells had no
idea that this would be the beginning of an aid
organisation unique in New Zealand.
Since then, Trade Aid shops have opened all
over New Zealand and each one, staffed mainly
by volunteers, is run by an independent chari-
table trust. Vi, who lives in Christchurch, is still
involved after all these years.
Napier s Trade Aid shop opened its doors on
November 10, 1976, and recently celebrated its
35th birthday. Napier manager Maureen Ken-
nedy believes many of the early volunteers
donated money to finance the shop and buy stock,
which was stored in somebody s garage.
Three of the original volunteers, Jerry Hog-
garth, Jill McConnachie and Isabel Morgan, are
still working here today, she says.
In the early days, it was a real struggle; with
no telephone or cash register, and even small
things like buying a Sellotape dispenser had to be
considered. The budget was so tight they even
had to measure how much Sellotape would be
used, because they could only afford to buy one
roll a month!
Over the years it has been great to see the
differences that have occurred in the village co-
operatives with whom Trade Aid works.
For instance a covered drain where once there
was an open sewer, an extractor fan for the fine
dust that comes from carving soapstone products,
a school for street kids in Nairobi (financed orig-
inally from the making of the soapstone eggs),
and the purchase of a cow, hen or sewing
machine. These things make such a difference to
people, mainly women, who make the beautiful
handcrafts that we sell.
It has been good, too, to see that the women
now have a say in how the co-operatives are
governed and how the profits are spent.
Of the expansive selection of products, which
runs the gamut from jewellery to woven baskets,
the constants are the commodities such as
chocolates, coffee and tea.
Mo bros: Staff,
from left, Brian
Oh mo: Hard materials teacher Darryl Bryce at the mercy of student Sam Dunn, one of several
students who won the right to shave off the staff's Movember moustaches by matching teachers
to photos of them as babies.
Nine Napier Intermediate staff
were happy to forfeit their
Movember moustaches last week
but there were a few hairy
moments as students who d won
the right to shave them moved in
with the clippers.
Some kept a stiff upper lip and
others bristled as the young
blades went about their work
Teacher Darryl Bryce said that
as well as having a lot of fun, sev-
eral hundred dollars was raised
for the Cancer Society and Mental
Health Foundation by students
making a gold coin donation to
wear a fake moustache.
Movember s serious messages
about men s health and
depression had also been raised
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