An offer to congregations from Just Trading Scotland:
Climate change is having a disastrous effect on the people of Malawi. Unpredictable rains, droughts and flooding have had devastating consequences for the countries agricultural sector leaving many farmers with severely depleted incomes. Though countries like Malawi have some of the world’s lowest emissions of greenhouse gases, it is amongst the countries which have been most severely affected by the negative effects of climate change.
Just Trading Scotland have a long-standing partnership with small-holder rice farmers in the North of Malawi. Through this we seek to empower the community through giving them a fair price for their product and enabling them to invest this money into the education of their children and improving their farming equipment. The rice is produced by traditional cultivation methods which protect the environment and have sustained local communities for centuries. Within this there is no flooding of the paddy fields which has been linked to an increased production in greenhouse gasses.
In opposition to the methods of huge agri-businesses in the region, investing in small-holder farmers provides an opportunity to upscale production and increase food security with a far lower environmental cost through investment in things like tarpaulins, ox-carts and rotovators.
Through selling this rice in the UK we seek to give people an opportunity to do this by supporting a system which values people over profit and reinforces the idea that it is totally wrong that people should have to suffer so that we may enjoy luxuries at a cheaper price.
You can do this through taking part in the 90kg rice challenge, an innovative way to engage your congregation on the subject of Mission by selling enough rice to enable a Malawian farmer to send their child to secondary school for a year. Secondary school education is often too expensive and less than one in three Malawian children are able to attend. By helping to rectify this problem a new generation of Malawians will be empowered to lift themselves out of poverty and create a sustainable future for themselves.
On top of this we also realise that things are difficult here at home, to ensure that thousands of people in the UK do not go hungry, foodbanks are needed to supply individuals and families living in poverty with food. In 2014 there was well over one million documented uses of Foodbanks in the UK.
As well as buying the rice for their own use, throughout the year we are encouraging our supporters to donate Kilombero rice to their local foodbanks. In this way you can bless the needy in Malawi and the UK with one simple donation.
For more information on the campaign please e-mail James@jts.co.uk or phone 0141 255 0901