This year the World Fair Trade Organization asked for my support with their Anti Poverty Week 2017 campaign #LiveFair & #BeatPoverty.
During the week I attended a Coffee Morning organised by my friend Maryam and kindly asked ladies to support Anti-Poverty Week 2017, Dubai, UAE.
I talked about Fair Trade, Fair Trade Chocolate and Anti Poverty Week.
There were approximately 30 ladies present and I made a few fair trade friends.
I also asked my dear friend Joanna who was visiting me from Poland to model for me.
Joanna was a great sport and I am grateful for her support during Anti Poverty Week.
To read more please click here and support social and trade justice!
Thank you! Sabeena
This October I was interviewed by Voice of Islam Radio Station, London, UK.
My interview with Paksy Plackis-Chang and Impact Mania was released on Twitter and Facebook.
I presented fair trade to ladies at a coffee morning.
I finally had my surgery for my rotater cuff. My right shoulder is painful but healing.
I welcomed my friend Joanna Smieja from Poland. It was Joanna's first visit to Dubai and the UAE.
Suported Anti-Poverty Week 2017, Dubai, UAE.
Recorded my tribute to my beloved mother for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Received my ''This Is Manchester'' tribute book.
I was invited by Manor Primary School and children of Year 5 to talk about fair trade.
We started the lesson by watching the Max Havelaar Chocolate Song.
The world in my shopping basket - children learnt where fair trade products came from.
Year 5 tasted fairtrade Divine Milk Chocolate and Green & Blacks Maya Gold.
The children watched a fairtrade video about Tayna a young girl who visited cocoa farmers and their communities in the Dominican Republic.
Children learnt about the fair price, social premium, social standards and the environment.
The children showed their support for fair trade and we ended the session with lots of happy memories.
I hope they will be the future fair trade stars and campaigners in Dubai and the United Arab Emirates.
This September I am still tolerating the torn ligament in my right shoulder, however, I managed to Skype with Paksy Plackis-Cheng founder Impact Mania based in Calfornia, USA.
My tribute to my late mother was tweeted by the Women's Words Manchester project.
I received a wonderful birthday present my new business cards from my Creative Director Helen Barlow Scott.
Attended the Salam Sisters Network Dubai (SSND) monthly meeting.
Taught fair trade to Year 5 at the Manor Park Primary School, Dubai.
Attended the ZB Foundation lunch with founders Dani Wilson and Saima Khan and presented a fair trade talk to over a 100+ ladies.
Participated in Live Create Meditate event with Mariam Yasin and Amruta Kshemkalyani.
This August I was diagnosed with a torn ligament in my right shoulder which will require surgery and physiotherapy.
I finally managed to Skype with Dr Sara Calvo Martinez founder of Living in Minca and professor at the Middlesex University Business School, London.
My fair trade story was featured in the Story Exchange Women Mean Business website.
I organised meetings with Mr Daniel Ludvig and Mr Sayed of Sheraa, Sharjah.
Had coffee with Sandra Stephenson senior lecturer at the Middlesex University Dubai, and met founder and chairperson of ZBFoundation Dani Wilson and Saima Khan.
During October 2015 I had the privilege to interview Mr Stephen Salmon of Thaicraft, Bangkok, Thailand.
I had previously visited Thaicraft during 2009 and 2011 and was interested to learn about the history of the fair trade movement in Thailand.
Many thanks to Mr Salmon and his team for their time.
It was inspiring to finally meet Dr Sara Parker professor who is a lecturer and reader at John Moores IUniversity Liverpool.
Dr Parker has spent the past 30 years researching Nepal in particular Sikles a town in Nepal and supporting fairtrade producers WEAVE in Pokhara.
She has written and designed a fairtrade puppet set for children called Fairis the Frog and established her own company Fair Connections and Fair Connections Foundation supporting local schools in Nepal.
For every fair trade puppet set purchased one is donated to a school in Nepal educating children in the most rural areas and regions.
I had the good fortune to visit Bruce Crowther, MBE during November 2016 and spent a morning learning how to produce fair trade chocolate bean to bar.
Fredrick is a member of the Kuapa Kukoo Farmers Cooperative Ghana, and it was wonderful feeling knowing he had grown the cocoa for our chocolate.
We began our chocolate making at the crack of dawn and I was nervous not to make any mistakes and spoil Bruce's batch of chocolate.
I have posted all the photographs chronologically as we produced the chocolate.
This month I was I was approached by Ellen van Dongen of the Responsible Shopping Dubai website and asked if The Little Fair Trade Shop would like to be featured. I said YES!
Attended my first Dubai Vegan Meet Up, continued with my Who Made My Clothes course and was diagnosed with a painful frozen shoulder.
I spent most of August 2016 with my siblings in London and mustered the energy to board a train to historical York to visit Shared Earth and talk with founder and owner Jeremy Piercy.
Many thanks to David Piercy for his time and support during my visit.
I would like to introduce you to another leading fairtrade pioneer and champion of the fairtrade movement of the United Kingdom, Ms Christina Longden.
Christina is a humanitarian, an accomplished author and Director (Fundraising/Information) at The Lorna Young Foundation.
I fulfilled a life time ambition to visit Pakistan December 2011 and February 2015 and met the only two fair trade certified organisations in Karachi and Rawalpindi.
I also conducted interviews with a government official and non profit organisations who are working towards implementing the ten principles of fair trade. Each organisation has a dual role and purpose;
1. to support rural artisans establish and develop strong sustainable projects and
2. revive traditional skills and techniques.
I have attached interviews with Fairtrade and NGO's I visited during December January 2011/12 and February/March 2015.
THE DOMINION TRADERS
THE RA'ANA LIAQUAT CRAFTMEN'S COLONY
THE HOME BASED WOMEN'S WORKERS FEDERATION
AHAN - AIK HUNAR AIK NAGAR
KAARVAN CRAFTS - PRIDE PAKISTAN
AL FALAH TRUST AND EMBROIDERY PROJECT
The Ra'ana Liaquat Craftmen's Colony
Income Generation Programme
The Ra'ana Liaquat Craftmen's Colony was founded by Begum Ra'ana Liaquat, 1954.
I visited their inspirational headquarters and observed training workshops where ladies were taught to produce beautiful up-cycled products.
Mrs Nisreen was happy to share her story and work experiences. It was wonderful to learn how the income generation programme had empowered her and given her the opportunity to supplement her income by designing crochet products.
The Dominion Traders
Fairly traded Marble and Onyx Producers
The Dominion Traders have been promoting fair trade in Pakistan since 1947.
I had the good fortune of interviewing Mr Syed Fahad Ali, Chief Executive Officer and his team of talented artisans when I visited their offices and factory, December 2011.
Since it's inception the organisation has supported approximately 60 employees who are treated with the utmost love and respect. Employees receive fair wages, are employed in good working conditions and are provided with medical care.
KAARVAN CRAFTS - PRIDE PAKISTAN
Kaarvan's mission is to be a fairtrade market leader by producing and retailing affordable and sophisticated hand crafted products in local and export markets.
It provides employment opportunities and marketing and advisory services to women and girls in low income communities so that they can enhance their economic realities.
AHAN - AIK HUNAR AIK NAGAR
Ahan is a non profit company created by the Pakistani Industrial Corporation in 2006.
It has 4 offices based in Lahore, Peshawar, Quetta and Karachi.
It aims to provide employment for small marginalised craftsman and artisans around Pakistan.
It works to revive traditional handicrafts through skill enhancement, product development, technological output, quality control and market and financial support.
I was honoured to interview Dr Badar Siddiqui of The Al Falah Trust and Embroidery Project, December 2011.
The Al Falah Trust and Embroidery Project was founded by Mrs. Shahina Siddiqui in 1995.
The organisation supports disadvantaged and marginalised women from, Taluka, Mirpur, Sakhro, Thatha (Tatta) in the province of Sindh.
Traditional embroidery and home accessories are produced using traditional patterns and colours that promote their rich heritage which would otherwise be lost or forgotten.
Fair Trade Lebanon
In this month recap I've talked about my Ramadan reflections and participating in my first ever International Fair Trade Towns Conference 2016, Baskinta, Lebanon.
I have been campaigning for fairtrade and ethical producers and ethical consumerism in my beloved home city of Manchester, London, Dubai and Abu Dhabi for the past 14 years.
One of greatest accomplishments is converting my mother to fairtrade products before she returned to her maker.
As the only fair trade campaigner, educator and modest retailer in the United Arab Emirates I have struggled to create a niche market for fair trade products.
Nevertheless, I have never lost heart and am more determined than ever to dispel the myth about fair trade being ''charity.''
It was a wonderful experience to meet Professor Mohammad Yunus at Salford University.
A privilege to discuss fair trade with Dr Jamil Sherif and Mrs Naseema Begum at the Muslim Council of Britain November 2016.
Thank you World Pulse for your compassion and love and for your support in raising my voice as a Muslim Female Social Entrepreneur.
I continue to educate people about fair trade artisans and groups by promoting the principles of a living wage, self-reliance, empowerment, transparency, environmental sustainability and dignity and self respect for all.
Fair trade Banana Lesson Plan
I was invited to teach fairtrade to a group of 25 children at the Star International School, Mirdif, Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The children were enthusiastic and eager to learn about fairtrade.
I decided to introduce the banana supply chain and used role play cards for them to understand and emphasise with the difficulties and challenges faced by farmers and banana workers.
My Visit to Traidcraft
I recently visited Alistair Menzies at Traidcraft's head office, Gateshead, UK and was invited to provide input for a video the Traidcraft team is producing for FairtradeUAE.
This was my second visit to Gateshead and I was interested to learn about Traidcraft's new initiatives and fair trade products.