How to Think and Act Globally for the Greater Good

How to Think and Act Globally for the Greater Good

Featured, Sustainable Development Goals
Do you think and act globally in your local community?  Years ago, I caught on to the practice of fair trade.  Knowing deep down free trade is not fair for many global citizens, I looked for a different way to do business. It was through the fair trade movement that I was able to breathe new life into Simply Sustainable, and connect with communities near and far. Back in 2010 when I was making a major shift, I invested in a small batch of handicrafts from a neighbouring community in Guatemala, where I was living at the time. I packed a duffle bag full of goodies, and set forth for the North where I would exhibit them alongside my handmade jewelry at fairs and festivals during summer months. For me, it…
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Still Wondering Why to Invest in Sustainability?

Still Wondering Why to Invest in Sustainability?

All Posts, Featured, Sustainable Development Goals
Have you ever noticed that people who promote sustainability are optimistic?   Perhaps it's because we know that the true benefits of sustainability go beyond going green, they also make economic sense. Speak to a skeptic, they might tell you it costs too much. Either way you look at it, environmental initiatives across the globe may cost you today, but tomorrow’s payoff is well worth the investment. We’ve reached Sustainable Development (SDGs) Goal 9 in a series of blogs that I’ve been writing to break down the targets, and share my insight. Steps to Sustainable Development Going through each topic has been a great exercise for me, and I hope it’s been beneficial for you as well. Together we are taking a closer look at what it really takes to make…
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Sustainability Sweet Spot

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Ever tried to fit a square peg into a round hole?  How about a round peg into a square hole?  I have, and the results are revealing. You see, I always believed myself to be a round peg.  And after researching the term a little bit deeper, it's all so clear. The origins of the idiom are attributed to the 19th-century British philosopher and cleric Sydney Smith who uses the word “misfit” to define the peg.  Of course that makes sense – mis-fit. Another part of the example I found quite interesting – “trying to combine two things that do not belong or fit together”.  That one triggered an interesting memory. The Big Question It was fourth year of university, and as I was standing in front of the students in my…
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My vision was blurry, but my purpose is clear

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At the end of 2014 I posted How’s your Vision? I think it’s safe for me to admit that mine was a bit blurry. I wrote that post on December 31st, 2014. I was going full force ahead, wind at my back, embracing a new way for a Simply Sustainable life. That was of course until I went to Cuba in January and had to explain what exactly I did for a living. It wasn’t hard due to a language barrier, my Spanish skills are quite good. It was due to the fact that I really didn’t know where I was going or exactly how I would get there. I knew that I wanted to share and connect; to teach and learn, but I didn't fully know how I would do…
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Purchase with Purpose

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There is a fine line between conservation and hoarding.  Seeing value in so many things can lead to not throwing items away.  To be completely honest – despite being a Virgo – I am not very tidy.  My older Sister (by only 22 months) has been a role model to me ever since I can remember.  She has been there for me in one way or another for decades and I am so grateful for our commitment to each other.  Luckily one of her expertise and hobbies is Clutter Crackdown and I was her guinea pig. It took a long time for what she was saying to sink in, however over the years her voice (echoed by my mother’s) finally makes sense.  I am finding liberation and enjoyment in getting…
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How do you take your Coffee?

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Recently a retailer asked me a very important question: what brand of Fair Trade Coffee do you recommend? As an avid coffee drinker and inspired to walk the talk, I brew an assortment of Fair Trade, Direct Trade & Beyond Fair Trade coffees. Off the top of my head I rhymed off a few that she could check out – however the question still sits on my mind. Where we spend our money has such a big impact on shaping the world – I wanted to ensure that I was directing her to the best bag of coffee based on her ethical values. What is the ideal coffee for a retailer looking to offer positive products? It was a great question and ever since she asked (about a month ago),…
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Satisfy your Soul

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September is an exciting month. With my birthday at the beginning, followed by an annual trip to Ottawa for Folkfest shortly after, I’ve got a lot to celebrate. Truthfully – I feel as though I grow into myself a little bit more each year. Looking at books about birthdays, reading into my astrological sign over the years & learning about my Mayan sign while traveling have all led me to conclude that I am a lot like they describe. Sure, there are some generalizations that can apply to many – but at the core – I can really relate to what is written. It wasn’t always this way. There was a time when I went off course, turned into someone else to please others, but luckily – I found my…
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Is Passion Sustainable?

Is Passion Sustainable?

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Over the past five years I have dedicated my energy to growing and developing a different kind of business.  One that is driven by passion.  I did not fit well into the corporate culture of the companies I once worked for.  Creating my own culture through a personal grassroots movement has been my greatest success. [caption id="attachment_76" align="aligncenter" width="266"] Simply Sustainable at Mariposa Folk Festival[/caption] Growing pains will always be part of the growth process – however solid ground in the overall mission helps immensely.  Defining my mission statement from the very beginning was a bit tricky - but setting out the foundation for what I wanted to achieve helped me walk towards it .  When I first started making jewelry – I was enjoying the art behind it.  I…
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The Limitless Nature of Fair Trade

The Limitless Nature of Fair Trade

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Have you ever wondered what it takes to run a good and ethical business? Growing up I knew the importance of being good to others & being ethical, however when it came to business I really only had one comprehension.  Business is about making money.  It is about high returns for the shareholders. Throughout university, much of my understanding remained the same until one day when I was assigned a term project on the topic of Environmental Auditing.  It became clear to me that business goes far beyond dollars and cents, and even further beyond shareholders and boardrooms. Sustainable Shift One thing led to another and I shifted from thinking of the Shareholders to better understanding and working with the Stakeholders.  For those of you new to this, here’s a…
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