About Global Village Gifts
Global Village Gifts is a not-for-profit retail store featuring fairly traded handcrafts produced by artisans and farmers around the world. Our mission is two-fold: We educate the local public on the principles of Fair Trade, and we support artisans through the employment opportunities offered by Fair Trade.
How We Practice Fair Trade
As a member of Fair Trade Federation, Global Village Gifts is committed to paying artisans in third-world countries a fair price for the products they make. Our goal is to help these artisans provide for their families and improve their future rather than endure unemployment and substandard living conditions. While most for-profit corporations purchase merchandise at the lowest possible price at the expense of the artisan, fair trade organizations work to further the economic success of producers in developing countries.
Many of the artisans whose products we sell are women. According to the United Nations Development Program, women provide the primary support for a quarter of the world's families, and women are the sole support for another quarter. By purchasing merchandise at Global Village Gifts, you are contributing to better the lives of underprivileged artisan families in Asia, Africa and South and Central America.
The reason Global Village Gifts can buy products at a fair price for the artisans, yet sell them at an affordable price for customers, is because the store is operated by volunteers, whose age ranges from 18-76. The volunteers interact with customers on the sales floor, display new merchandise, and teach the community about fair trade. Our mission would be impossible without these hard-working individuals who give their time and talents to support the Fair Trade mission. If you are interested in contributing as a volunteer, visit our Volunteer With Us! page.
Global Village Gifts opened to the public on November 7, 2003, under the umbrella of Ten Thousand Villages, Utah. In September 2005, with the blessing of Ten Thousand Villages, Utah, we separated to become Global Village Gifts, which is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation committed to promoting intercultural understanding. It is through your generous tax deductible donations that we are able to further our mission of educating the local public while making an impact globally.
One of our major suppliers is Ten Thousand Villages, an economic development program of the Mennonite Central Committee since 1946. Ten Thousand Villages purchases handicrafts from artisan cooperatives in developing countries and distributes the merchandise through its warehouse in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Another major supplier is SERRV International, a nonprofit alternative trade and development organization. SERRV’s mission is to promote the social and economic progress of people in developing regions of the world by marketing their products in a just and direct manner.