Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

World Fair Trade Day

Saturday, May 9th, 2015

Today is World Fair Trade Day and although we have no planned events, we will be mentioning it whenever possible and remembering those on whose behalf we are trying to be an ‘agent for change’.

£100 has been donated for the people in Nepal, small change really considering the enormity of the disaster, we shall continue to raise funds.

After this week-end we shall be handing over the keys for a week to Christian Aid for their pop-up shop again.

World Fair Trade Day

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

Each year on the second Saturday of May, the WFTO celebrates World Fair Trade day.

This year we shall be promoting prayer flags and fairy doors, then donate the profits to try and help those in Nepal.

Sadly, some of my suppliers are reporting either bad news of a death or no news from remote villages where the worst is feared. Many businesses will inevitably change because of this devastating event hundreds of miles away.

We are all connected.



Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Much of the stock in Sonia’s Smile is from Nepal. Lovely woollies, felt bags and hats and more recently, colourful  satchels and rucksacks.

Nepal has been through some really difficult times with the borders being closed down and no planes allowed in or out, electricity restricted to a few hours each day.

Just when things were improving they are hit with the devastating earthquake, killing and injuring thousands.

I value all the things in my shop, not for the cost but for the fact that they have been made by skilled craftspeople, paid a fair price to help them live a decent life. Life in Nepal is precarious and my thoughts are with the families, hoping that they can pick themselves up and get back to some sort of normal as they have done many times before.

Again, we are reminded of how wealthy we are.


Thursday, February 26th, 2015

A new attraction at the shop arrived in November, this is Yoko. She is 5 months old now and gets a great deal of attention.


Tour de France

Tuesday, July 8th, 2014

We had the most brilliant day in Haworth when the cyclists passed within inches of the shop!


Prior to the Grand Depart, we made our own little video with bananas struggling to reach the top.

Check it out here

It’s a sign

Thursday, July 3rd, 2014

asign_1070After almost 12 years of being declared the first Fairtrade village in the world we have the ‘boundary sign’ as people enter the village from Cross Roads. There will be another one shortly on West Lane.

The success of this welcome is mainly down to the dedication of Chris Upton. We believe this obviously simple way to spread the word is long overdue.


What a result!

Friday, May 30th, 2014


photo(42)The pop-up shop was a huge success with a brilliant £1,721 raised. The money will be used by Christian Aid and will benefit many of those who need it most but the value of the shop is much more than this.

The 1940’s week-end, this year blessed with gorgeous weather, brings thousands to the street and amongst all the costumes and dramas, a reminder of how fortunate we are is incredibly important but apart from that the camaraderie inside the shop with the helpers spending time with each other and the public, made for a special few days.

Despite the fact that it took just a few hours to empty my stock but several days to get it back up and running, I am happy offer the shop again next year, I hope they want it.


Moving out, but only for a week!

Friday, May 9th, 2014

Sonia’s Smile will become a Christian Aid pop-up shop next week 14th -18th May. The stock will be moved out and the walls painted, corners swept, windows polished and then for a few days the local Churches Together group will be taking up residence to raise money for Christian Aid week.

Christian Aid was one of the founder members of the Fairtrade Foundation along with CAFOD, Traidcraft, National Federation of Women’s Institutes, World Development Movement and Oxfam so a fitting use of the space. This covers  the 1940’s w/e when the village is inundated by thousands of visitors celebrating the war years and the military so it’s a crucial reminder for peace and love, and help, for those Countries today torn apart by conflict.

World Fair Trade Day May 10th

Friday, May 9th, 2014


8th International Fair Trade Towns Conference

Wednesday, March 26th, 2014

photo(41)This year is the first time that the International Fair Trade Towns Conference has been held outside Europe. This is a photo of Shoko in Oslo inviting us all to Kumamoto, the first Fairtrade Town in Japan. Shoko is chair of their steering group and she treated everyone to a taste of Japanese culture with a traditional dance following this presentation.

One reason for taking the conference there was to support all the work that is being done in Asia. I will miss being there but next year it comes back to the UK where Bristol will be the host.