Our Global Footprint is at the very top of our list of priorities. As a business every decision we make takes this into account, this is why it was important to us to choose sustainable packaging where possible and The Raja Group provided us with exactly what we wanted to meet our values.
For the majority of our packaging & stationary we use The RAJA Group. One of the reasons for choosing to work with them is that in partnership with their suppliers, the RAJA Group has selected eco-responsible products and for every pack purchased from these partnership products, The RAJA Group donates £1 to their Action Programme.
The RAJA-Danièle Marcovici Foundation has chosen 6 "Women & Environment" projects to support:
Project 1: Farms without Boarders
To secure the economic empowerment of female farmers through the restructuring of a local dairy industry.
In Burkina Faso, where 80% of the population live from agriculture and breeding, the local milk production competes with imported powdered milk, which is 30% cheaper. The families of local livestock farmers financially suffer from this, and particularly the women who work on the farms milking the cows and who sell the milk. The project carried out by Farms without Boarders, and the local association Action for the Promotion of Local Initiatives, aims to strengthen the skills of herders in the province of Oubritenga. Located in the Central Plateau region, local farmers need more technical skills, knowledge and business guidance to help generate a sustainable income. 150 herder families will receive training to improve their farming, milking techniques and the cultivation of crops for animals. And a dairy cooperative will be built to provide farmers with the means to process and sell their milk independently.
Project 2: Yobalema
Training women in agroecological practices and helping them to build a vegetable garden.
In Senegal, in the region of Rufisque, the West Coast is impacted by climate change affecting both agricultural and fisheries production. The food insecurity experienced by the residents is exacerbated by the reduction in employment. This has caused many fishermen to migrate to the cities and find work to support their families. 37 fishermen's wives from the village of Kelle have united to support one another, and to share their agricultural products they cultivate. The Yobalema association has provided aid to this group of people, to help develop a sustainable and profitable agricultural project. The association will train women in agroecology and permaculture through practical workshops and courses. This project will promote food security in the village and help ease their economic difficulties.
Project 3: Food2Rue
To promote the socio-professional integration of women into employment by providing sustainable training methods in the food industry.
In the Ile-de-France region, women struggle with inequality at work. This effects their career opportunities and prospects, this inequality effects basic living such as access to better, healthier foods such as organic produce. The association Food2Rue created "The Panamanian woman" in 2018. It is a solidarity food hall, located in the 14th arrondissement of Paris, which has a food counter and a grocery store, with seasonal, organic and local products. The shop is managed by a team of 14 women, who have struggled with inequality, they are able to gain the professional experience and skills as part of this project.
Project 4: WECF
Supporting female entrepreneurs in sustainable agriculture and food.
Since 2011 in the rural area of Haute-Savoie, WECF France supports 50 female entrepreneurs to help develop their businesses, thanks to the regional network "Rural women". Following a study carried out in 2015 of a hundred women from the region, the association found that they face financial pressures and lack support for their businesses, having little or no access to advice or guidance. WECF France wishes to take on a further 50 members, to strengthen the "Rural Women" network. The aims of the network are to help improve the income of female entrepreneurs and guarantee food security in the region, while promoting the use of sustainable agricultural practices.
Project 5: Fleurs de Cocagne
To help unemployed women regain professional skills though market gardening and organic horticulture.
Fleurs de Cocagne have been a success, in terms of social, professional and financial support for unemployed women and retail profits from the initiative. This also demonstrates a consumer demand for responsible and sustainable trade.
The association aims to strengthen its ecological approach and by making its production site a "green showroom", with two main aims, biodiversity and social integration. The project has a number of construction plans to develop the site, such as a new storage building, restoration of the well and cultivating the land, as well as the installation of greenhouses. Also there are plans to build educational vegetable gardens that will be open to the general public, schools and businesses to learn about biodiversity. The women managing the green site will gain professional skills and experience, and will be in charge of visitors and presenting Fleurs de Cocagne's activities.
Project 6: Migration & Development
To promote sustainable farming methods and strengthen the role of women in agroecological practices
In Morocco, in the isolated rural areas of the Atlas and Anti-Atlas Mountains. Families are dependent on agriculture and are struggling to move beyond the subsistence economy and are affected by climate change. Combined with harmful human practices of intensive agricultural production, these factors degrade living conditions of the population and endanger natural resources. Since 2016, Migration & Development has been running a project to develop agroecological practices and strengthen the position of women in the agricultural transition in the Souss-Massa region. The first phases of the project have enabled 45 female farmers to be trained in agroecological practices and the management of farms. The association now wishes to guarantee the empowerment of these female farmers with the stability of their income by integrating their production into a regional market circuit. The project also includes the construction of a water reservoir and a well, as well as a promoting agroecological practice throughout the region.
It is so important to us to use Loving Small Business as a platform, a platform to advocate sustainability, gender equality and entrepreneurship so this fitted in perfectly with our ethos!