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Fairtrade football donation from Huntly Ethical Trading Initiative leads to national recognition

By David Porter

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Community groups and individuals across Aberdeenshire who share the importance of supporting Fairtrade have been recognised at the Scottish Fair Trade Awards 2023.

Huntly's Fairtrade Town group handing over Fairtrade footballs to the new Women's team at Christie Park in January. Picture: Beth Taylor
Huntly's Fairtrade Town group handing over Fairtrade footballs to the new Women's team at Christie Park in January. Picture: Beth Taylor

Winners of the Innovation Award which goes to an individual, group or organisation that has created an innovative campaign or taken a new approach to Fair Trade were Huntly Ethical Trading Initiative.

The group actively participate in online events, host Fairtrade stalls throughout the year in their community for different events, reach out to the local elected officials and are active members of the Aberdeenshire Fairtrade Steering group where they share all their ideas with others making Aberdeenshire Fairtrade Zone status a possibility.

On top of this, earlier in the year they were involved in an innovative campaign to promote Fairtrade in football.

The aim of the project was to raise awareness of the need for the ethical trading of footballs.

They worked with the community and the newly formed Huntly FC Women.

At the very first league game at Christie Park against Inverurie Locos, ahead of kick-off, the group presented two Fairtrade footballs and a football bag to the team.

They got to choose player of the match and present the trophy, and the event was published in the Huntly Express as well as on Grampian Online.

Their citation stated: "Huntly Ethical Trading Initiative is innovative as a group with their aim of promoting all ethical trade, local and Fairtrade. "This Fairtrade football campaign is an example of their innovative ideas and their dedication to campaigning for ethical and fair trade in their local community."

Chairwoman Ellie Turner said: “We have a few Fairtrade footballs and when I heard that there was to be a Huntly Women’s football team, we decided to donate a couple to them, it just seemed the right thing to do.”

The Fair Trade and Sustainability Award was presented to Alford Fairtrade Group.

They work very closely with the local Academy and this year organised a sustainable and Fair Trade fashion show at the school.

They supported students in sourcing the clothing, food and drink for the event, and shared details with the wider community through their social media channels.

Having the fashion show featured in one of the 5 films to celebrate Scotland’s 10th anniversary as a Fair Trade Nation was the icing on the cake for all involved in their ethical fashion show.

As well as the group actively participating in online events, hosting Fairtrade stalls throughout the year, they have reached out to the local elected officials and support Transform Trade’s campaign for trade and business that puts people and planet first.

Their citation stated: "They are doing a fantastic job working with Alford Academy to highlight Fairtrade’s ethical and sustainable credentials.

"Very well done to the group and to the pupils of Alford Academy.

A Special Recognition award was presented to Peter Bellarby of Stonehaven Fairtrade Steering Group.

He has worked through challenging times and consistently engages with local businesses, faith establishments and the wider community.

His citation said: "Stonehaven was recently awarded Fairtrade Town status again and this would not have happened without the support of our winner.

"He actively participates in online events, hosts Fairtrade stalls throughout the year in his community, reaches out to the local elected officials and shares ideas with other groups in Aberdeenshire Fairtrade zone."

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