Become an Ethical Consumer

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” ~John Fitzgerald Kennedy

Dear Friends,
The holidays are fast approaching and each year, we are challenged to shop in waysjrpcwindow that reflect our values and support our world in positive ways. JRPC’s Olive Branch offers you a way to do just that — to support our work as well as the many farms, cooperatives and people around the world who rely on the fair trade market here to buy their goods so they can make a better life for themselves, their families and their communities. Plus this year, we have several new local and indigenous crafts to offer. I don’t know about you, but I prefer to see myself as a consumer that feeds these workers and communities rather than one that supports large corporations. So here are some suggestions for how we can be the consumers we wish to be this holiday:

We have lots of events coming up at JRPC to show off our fair trade and local goods — The Helena Fair Trade Market this coming Sunday, our Open House and Member Appreciation on 11/24, the Helena Made-Fair on 12/1 and 2, JRPC Peace Crane making on 12/1 and Kid’s Night on 12/7 .

Consider donations to JRPC or to one of the other great non-profits in Missoula — or to an organization helping our neighbors in California. This is a way you can spend a little or a lot, depending on your situation and know that it is helping make a better world.

Missoula is also fortunate to have some great local artists and locally-owned shops, like Upcycled, next door to JRPC where you can buy usable art pieces made from trash. You can visit many of these at the Holiday Made-Fair on 12/9.
If you care about small and locally-owned businesses, now is the time to support them so they can stay in business and keep your dollars here in our community.
Look at the list of businesses that support our annual peace party and give them some love!

And shopping second-hand, making items or giving services you can provide is always a great way to support zero waste and materialism — Ask us about all the ways that a simple origami crane can become a beautiful gift!

If your holiday includes gift-giving, perhaps you can plan now for a combination of gifts that support these local alternatives. We’d love to hear you or ideas for making the holidays more peaceful and just. Send us an email

Thankful for your support, Betsy

PS: We’ll be taking a break from our newsletter next week to spend time with our families and we will again be closed on Friday after Thanksgiving to observe, “Buy Nothing Day”.!