SURREY – On beautiful Saturday afternoon Surrey was home to 2nd Annual KidSport Fair Trade Community Soccer Match an really important event in celebration of the resilience and leadership capabilities of KidSport Canada’s “Youth Sport Navigators” program who are Surrey refugee youths. The match was a showcase of the athletic talents of these young adults, and their aspirations for better future, as they played against two minor soccer association teams from Surrey – the Surdel Girls and Central City Boys, this was also good opportunity for these young adults to learn more about soccer mastership and skills from experienced coaching staff from our MLS representative Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

Fair Trade which is sustainable system of trade which puts social and environmental standards in place to protect producers and environment on this game was honored through playing this soccer match with Fair Trade certified balls. These balls are representing unique solidarity between local consumers and international producers mainly in poor or exploited countries or as we better know them Third World Countries.

As I already mention Vancouver Whitecaps take a great deal in this community event which was also supported by The City of Surrey. Support from local municipality able these young adults and their friends to enjoy wonderful afternoon at Chuck Bailey Recreation Center in the core of rapidly developing Surrey downtown, adding KidSport Fair Trade Soccer Match to long list of community events dedicated to promotion of cultural diversity and social justice. The City of Surrey was represented by Councillor Barinder Rasode, and local MP Jasbir Sandhu (NDP) was honored to toss coin at the start of the match.

What is Fair Trade?

Fair trade is an organized social movement and market-based approach that aims to help producers in developing countries make better trading conditions and promote sustainability. The movement advocates the payment of a higher price to producers as well as higher social and environmental standards. It focuses in particular on exports from developing countries to developed countries, most notably handicrafts, coffee, cocoa, sugar, tea, bananas, honey, cotton, wine, fresh fruit, chocolate, flowers and gold. In 2008, products certified with FLO International’s Fairtrade certification amounted to approximately US$4.98 billion (€3.4) worldwide, a 22% year-to-year increase. While this represents a tiny fraction of world trade in physical merchandise, some fair trade products account for 20-50% of all sales in their product categories in individual countries. In June 2008, Fairtrade Labelling Organizations International estimated that over 7.5 million producers and their families were benefiting from fair trade funded infrastructure, technical assistance and community development projects. The response to fair trade has been mixed. Fair trade’s increasing popularity has drawn criticism from both ends of the political spectrum. Marc Sidwell sees “fair trade” as a type of subsidy or marketing ploy that impedes growth. Segments of the left, such as French author Christian Jacquiau, criticize fair trade for not adequately challenging the current trading system. (Source: Wikipedia)

If you want to learn more about Fair Trade in Vancouver and BC visit: www.fairtradevancouver.ca, and if you want to know more about KidSport Canada visit: www.kidsportcanada.ca.

Here are some pictures from Saturday’s event in Surrey: