Making the Connection: D&G and Uganda

Dumfries and Galloway residents will be given a unique opportunity to gain insight into the life of a farmer in the developing world this Fairtrade Fortnight.

Ugandan coffee farmer Justine Watalunga will be visiting the region from the 1st until 5th of March, offering a rare glimpse into a world a far-cry from the towns and villages of southern Scotland.

Justine, 49, is one of four producers who will be visiting the UK as part of Fairtrade Fortnight (25 February – 10 March), when they will visit and hold talks at numerous schools, businesses and community organisations during their stay.

This year Fairtrade is asking people to “go further” by trying a Fairtrade product that they have not bought before. They can raise awareness of Fairtrade and ask their local shops and communities to go further for Fairtrade Fortnight themselves.

Matthew Aitken, who is co-ordinating Justine’s visit to the region, said, “Justine is going further this Fairtrade Fortnight by travelling all this way to give people in the area an invaluable opportunity to hear about life as a farmer in the developing world, and how the UK’s buying patterns can affect her daily life.” “We are pleased that Justine will be visiting a number of places across Dumfries and Galloway that is not yet Fairtrade Towns.  We hope that her visit will encourage communities to go further and become Fairtrade Towns.” “Justine is an inspirational woman with so many stories to tell, and we are very excited to be welcoming her to Scotland. We’d love those in the area coming along to the events and seeing the difference Fairtrade can make to the lives Justine and her fellow farmers. She will be taking part in events from Annan to Stranraer including visits to schools, attending coffee mornings and meeting councillors and MPs.

You can meet Justine at the Annan Big Brew in the United Reformed Church in Station Road on Saturday 1 March from 10:30 am or in the Glenriddell Hall in Dunscore again on Saturday 1 March from 2:00 pm.”  Justine adds, ‘Fairtrade is like a miracle to us; especially the Fairtrade Premium which comes directly into our hands. It is an acknowledgement of our work, of what we are capable of and who we are. It is so important to us, so to have the opportunity to meet with people who buy our coffee is just incredible. I am looking forward to experiencing Scottish life.’ For more information on Fairtrade Fortnight, visit www.fairtrade.org.uk/gofurther

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