The holidays provide a much needed celebration and break for both the Global Goods team
and our artisan partners
around the world. We checked in with them to see how they're celebrating the festive season, and we love the way they party...
In Kolkata, CRC has been growing rapidly over the past three years, but they've never stopped celebrating with their artisans during the festive season. The team at CRC love to chat together, enjoy meals, and invite artisans and staff to celebrate in picnics. Festivals like Eid, Durga puja and Christmas are celebrated together. Last year, in its annual picnic, CRC organized a "Fair Tree" Plantation Ceremony with its producer partners as a mark of adherence to the Tenth Fair Trade
Principle, "Respect for the Environment".
Sasa employs Kenyan women from the deaf community who would otherwise not have employment opportunities. As well as taking a two week break, almost all of the artisans travel "up country" to their rural homes to visit parents and family on the shamba (farm or plot of land where rural families live.) Holiday dishes include Nyama Choma (roast meat) and Pilau (a Swahili dish of rice, meat and spices.) Church services are full over the Christmas period, and Kenyans of all religions often head to the coast for New Years celebrations.
New Years is a huge celebration in Kyrgyzstan! Silk Road Bazaar artisans spend it with their families and decorate the table with all sorts of fruits, candy, and breads. "We cover the table as much as possible with different sorts of food because we believe that if our New Year's Table is empty then the following year will be a bad year but if it is full and overflowing then the upcoming year will be full of good luck," says Andrew. This is what a Kyrgyz New Years table typically looks like - smiling people and lots of food!
In Cambodia, December provides a rest period between November’s Water Festival, which celebrates the reversal of the flow in the Tonle Sap River, and New Years celebrations. This break leaves the artisans plenty of time to be well-rested and focus on creating their handmade, upcycled products so their customers can find the perfect last-minute gift!
In the neighborhood of Manchay, the team at Naguska shared in a Christmas breakfast of delicious sweet bread and hot chocolate. The artisan knitters and their children met with Maria, the General Manager, as she shared the meaning of Christmas and how it can be personal to everyone. Maria gave presents to each child, who would otherwise receive nothing, and everyone enjoyed the breakfast treats together.
Much like their 13th Anniversary and Teacher's Day celebrations, Friends Handicraft celebrate Christmas the Nepali way by throwing an annual picnic with their artisans and staff. Christmas is an exciting time of year in Nepal, with feasts, trees, decorations and concerts, always celebrated with loved ones.
The Noah's Ark team celebrated Christmas together, distributing gifts to their employees, workers and artisans. Afterwards, they shared a beautiful meal together with this stunning view of Moradabad.
Although some Guatemalans celebrate New Years on the Mayan calendar, it's always brought in with dancing, music, colorful costumes and fireworks. For Christmas, the table is full of traditional dishes, especially tamales in all different styles - rice, corn, potatoes, olives, prunes, peppers, chicken or pork. For families, a prayer is said around the Christmas tree and presents are opened soon after midnight. You can't forget to wish each other "Feliz Navidad!"