Secondary school in Harlesden awarded for their ethically-minded stance

Pupils and teachers from the Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College were presented with a certi

Pupils and teachers from the Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College were presented with a certificate from the Cllr Bobby Thomas, Brent mayor (pic credit: Sally Buchanan) - Credit: Archant

The Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College is the first in the borough be awarded Fairtrade School status

A secondary school in Harlesden has been awarded for their hard work to promote the Fairtrade movement.

Pupils and teachers from the Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College in Crownhill Road were presented with a certificate from Cllr Bobby Thomas, Brent Mayor, for their ethically minded stance.

The school become the first in the borough to be awarded Fairtrade School status.

Nicola Walsh, assistant head teacher at the school, said: “We are not only proud that we are the first Fairtrade school in Brent to be award this prestigious accolade but, most importantly, we feel privileged that we as a school can embody the ideals the Fairtrade movement.”

The presentation kicked-off a ground-breaking panel discussion on ethical fashion and Fairtrade which was held at Brent Civic Centre by the Brent Fairtrade Network (BFN).

BFN works to promote Fairtrade across Brent and to encourage people to buy food which is Fairtrade certified.

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The Fairtrade label is given to products that meet independent standards that ensure producers in the developing world have been paid a fair wage.

Produces also earn an extra payment, called a social premium, which is invested into their communities.

More than 80 people attended the event chaired by Development Consultant Dr Peter Moore and with a panel involving speakers from Marks and Spencer, Pants to Poverty, the Fairtrade Foundation and the University of Birmingham.

Held as a result of the Bangladesh garment factory collapse in April in which more than 1,000 people lost their lives, topics discussed ranged from why the factory collapsed, to whether standards can be developed and what consumers in the West can do to make sure they are buying ethically.

Robin Sharp, chair of the Brent Fairtrade Network, said: “It was great to have a chance to hear top speakers talk about such an important current issue. What happened in Bangladesh was horrific but without action, it could happen again. We need to challenge consumers and governments to think about the treatment of workers abroad who are making clothes for people in the UK.”

The event was also a chance to celebrate Brent’s renewed Fairtrade status.

Last year it became a Fairtrade Borough, recognising the work done to promote Fairtrade across Brent.

For more information, visit or or follow on twitter @BrentFairtrade