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Fair Trade School

If not us, then who? If not now, then when?

                        -Nelson Mandela, 2005


Fair Trade Schools is a recognition program that honors K-12 schools for representing a strong commitment to fair trade by promoting social justice, environmental sustainability, and economic empowerment. A Fair Trade School equips students and staff with the ability to educate, promote, and advocate for fair trade. They use their buying power to offer products in cafeterias, vending machines, and fundraisers. A Fair Trade School offers many opportunities for challenge and growth by asking students to question what they can be doing to make the world a fairer place.


Fair Trade helps provide farming families with the income and stability they need to keep their own children in school, instead of in the fields. These schools challenge students to take responsibility and give them an opportunity to create real change. Schools are where we cultivate young minds to question and grow. It is a place to prepare them for living in the global community and we should be engaging their passions and empowering them. Fair trade is about empowerment for the producers and the consumers and promoting it within schools will help students understand how their everyday lives are a part of a much larger inter-connected community.


  • Wake up the world: Educate yourself and your community about the benefits of fair trade. Shift attitudes and encourage the purchases of fair trade products.
  • Host a Fair Trade Event: host an information session or a Valentine’s day chocolate sale
  • Start a Student Action Group: Unite fellow students and allies
  • Source Fair Trade Products 

IRTF offers a youth grant to schools to help establish a long term Fair Trade program at your school. Learn more here!

To get a Fair Trade Sale on your campus contact irtf[at]


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