LOFT – Loving Opportunities, Fair Trade – at First United Methodist Church, Burlington, is ready to help persons in developing countries.
“They don’t want a hand out, they want to work for their living,” said Ann Ure, LOFT’s director. “They don’t really have a way of doing in on their home communities. We’re providing them a market for their goods.” Many crafts persons, artisans, and small farm producers “just need a fair market,” she added.
LOFT partners with distributors for fair trade items who “provide a fair price up front and then distribute it to stores like ours in developed countries. There are very few ‘middle men’ compared to other types of markets,” Ure continued.
In offering fair trade items to Burlington Ure hopes “the community will be able to seize upon this opportunity and be able to help those people when they come to shop.”
Sunday, March 30, marked the “soft opening.” There will be “children’s items, jewelry, household items, baskets, bowl, linens, table cloths, toys…we hope to have a good variety of things,” Ure said.
LOFT is important to Ann Ure because “this is something that we can to do help…it’s a way to serve God by helping God’s children.