dZi Inc. has been working with artisans in the Tibetan exile community in India since 1990, and with Nepali artisans involved in traditional Tibetan style crafts since 1995. Their products are marketed as part of dZi’s ‘Tibet Collection’ line.
Authentic cloth prayer flags printed on hand-carved woodblocks are specially made for dZi by The Gu-Chu-Sum (9-10-3) Movement of Tibet, established in 1991 and based in Dharamsala, India. Gu-Chu-Sum was first organized by ex-political prisoners from the Tibetan freedom movement; monks, nuns and lay people who had escaped from Tibet due to political persecution. Its purpose is to provide employment and support to Tibetan refugees needing help in India, and to educate about human rights abuses in Tibet. You can try to visit www.gu-chu-sum.org, but the Chinese Government regularly sabotage their site!
dZi’s screen printed prayer flags are made by the Tibetan Nuns Projection (TNP), also based in Dharamsala, India. TNP’s mission is to provide a safe and supportive environment and education for Tibetan nuns who have fled Tibet for reasons of religious and political persecution. Visit tnp.org to learn more.
dZi’s Paper Prayer flags and incense are made by Tibetan Handicraft in Kathmandu Nepal, a member of Fair Trade Group Nepal and leader among the handmade paper export community. This business supports hundreds of people in the local community through it's income generation enterprise, and runs an elementary school providing free and low cost education for local children.
Sales of the all these products help to support the mission of these organizations and businesses.
Fair Trade Matters!
At Yoga Geek we feel that the principles of Fair Trade mirror the finest principles embodied in Yoga and Meditation traditions of the past and present. Fair Trade is a global movement that began in the 40’s and exists now as various parallel initiatives throughout the world. Driven by the efforts of Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and socially motivated individuals, Fair Trade began by providing advice, assistance and support to disadvantaged producers. Fair Trade has come to be a trading partnership, based on dialogue, transparency and respect, that seeks greater equity in international trade. It contributes to sustainable development by offering better trading conditions to, and securing the rights of, marginalized producers and workers.
In keeping with the spirit of the Eight Limbs of Yoga, here are eight reasons we feel so strongly about, and are happy to be offering, Fair Trade products to our Yoga and Meditation communities:
- Fair Trade products are made in safe and healthy working conditions, where artisans receive a fair price and have a voice in how their workplace is run.
- Fair Trade embraces practices that minimize our environmental footprint.
- Artisans take pride in their work. Crafts are handmade, which translates into closer attention to detail and in the end higher-quality products
- By working through cooperative structures, Fair Trade artisans are able to invest Fair Trade earnings in their communities, improving housing, healthcare, and schools.
- Fair Trade products are unique to the places they come from and the people who make them. Farmers and artisans are involved in the entire process, and Fair Trade products reflect the people and cultures they come from.
- Fair Trade gives farmers and artisans control of their own future. They can build their own businesses, rather than working for a middleman, and the profits stay in their communities and go back into their businesses.
- By choosing Fair Trade products, you are not only accessing high quality products, you are making a difference in the lives of the people who grow the food you eat and/or the goods you use.
- Fair Trade prohibits child labor, ensures health and safety measures are established in order to avoid work-related injuries and follows International Labor Conventions (ILO). Workers are guaranteed access to healthcare and community development premiums can be used to provide greater access to /quality of healthcare and education.