Seminar on Responsible Consumption

Koperattiva Kummerċ Ġust (KKĠ) is inviting youths, educators, activists and anyone interested for a seminar entitled ‘GLOBALISING RESPONSIBILITY: Debating the Principles of Ethical Consumption’ which is to take place on Saturday 2nd May at the Old University Building in Valletta between 9.00 am and 3.00pm.

In brief the seminar first offer participants a space to learn and discuss about issues relating to ethical consumption. The seminar then aims at training participants at becoming active citizens within our society and does so by offering workshops to enhance participant's skills in various areas. For those new to the concepts of Fair Trade and responsible consumption there will be introductory presentations to assist them in this regard.

Through four Focus Groups participants will reflect on responsible consumption from an environmental, a social, a political and an economical perspective. This process will be used to evaluate the value which the ‘fair trade’, ‘organic’, ‘sustainable’, ‘green’ and ‘eco’ labels have in ensuring social and environmental justice while at the same time discussing the limitations which such labels have.

After presenting the principles of ethical consumption Activism Workshops on the following topics are offered to participants:

  1. Effective Writing: Developing A Good Public Relations Campaign
  2. Successful Campaigning: Best Practices for Mobilising People for Change
  3. Legal Issues for Activists: Where Can We Demonstrate? What Can We Say?
  4. Fundraising: Finding Means To Finance Your Campaigns

These workshops are aimed at empowering youths at becoming active citizens and train those active within voluntary organisations to professionalise their work. These will be followed by a networking lunch.

The seminar will round up with a final discussion during which there will be remarks on the salient points presented during the focus-groups. Following this there will be a discussion on whether certain campaigns sensationalise and exaggerate issues relating to responsible consumption and how can this be avoided and ensure that the correct information is provided to the public. Attention will be given to how the TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) issue could inadvertently be sensationalised obstructing the real issues surrounding TTIP to remain undiscussed.

Registration deadline is the Thursday 30th April 2015. Those interested are requested to register for the workshops on: http://bit.ly/1ae8X1y. For further information please contact Erika Borg on erika.borg@l-arka.org or +356 79252098.

9.00am: Registration
Welcome Notes
Discussion Groups. Ethical Consumption discussed from:
10.30am: Conclusion of Activism Workshops
10.45am: Coffee Break
Workshops for Activists
  • Effective Writing: Developing A Good Public Relations Campaign, delivered by Ms. Monique Agius
  • Successful Campaigning: Best Practices for Mobilising People for Change, delivered by Julia Farrugia
  • Legal Issues for Activists: Where Can We Demonstrate? What Can We Say? delivered by Dr. John Axiak
  • Fundraising: Finding Means To Finance Your Campaigns delivered by Lorna Muscat
Networking Lunch (Ethically-sourced healthy finger-food)
2.00pm: Concluding Discussion on the Avoiding Sensationalising and Exaggerating Campaigns with Particular Attention to TTIP
3.00pm: Closing Notes

Speakers and Facilitators

Julia Farrugia is the President of Youth For The Environment (Y4TE),a University of Malta student run NGO. She's passionate about the environment and incorporates it into every aspect of her life. In her free time she enjoys reading, finding new DIY projects, and experiencing new and exciting things!

Martin Galea De Giovanni is the chairperson of Friends of the Earth Malta. FoE Malta is a local non-government organisation, member of an International network of NGOs, which strive to promote sustainable development and to ensure that human activities do not harm other living creatures. He represents FoE Malta at international meetings and until recently held the post of Executive Board Member at Friends of the Earth Europe in Brussels. Since joining FoE in 2000, Mr. Galea De Giovanni has been responsible for issues relating to Agriculture, Biodiversity and Climate change. Martin Galea De Giovanni holds an M.Sc in Environmental Management and Planning from the University of Malta. He previously graduated with an honours degree in Environmental Studies at the Open University U.K., after having originally studied and worked in the field of Computer Science. His lifelong interest in astronomy made him conscious of how precious our little planet is.

Monique Agius is currently reading for a degree in International Relations and Anthropology. Have volunteered and previously served on the executive committees of various NGOs, including Greenhouse -Malta where she held the post of press relations officer and was the female spokesperson for Front Against Censorship. Currently serving as a PRO for Alternattiva Demokratika - The Green Party.

John Axiak is a human rights lawyer who has worked with several grass-root organisation both in Malta and abroad which worked on environmental and disarmament/peace issues. John Axiak's passion is to study administrative law - that is to say, the rights an individual has when confronted by the state. In 2011 John graduated as a lawyer after submitting his dissertation on refugee law and in 2014 obtained his master after specialising further on administrative law. Currently John is served as a board member of Koperattiva Kummerc Gust and assist the Bicycle Advocacy Group on law relating to cycling and traffic. John is addicted to cycling and tries to cycle to work whenever he can.

Martin Cassar has a degree in Anthropology, and subsequently spent seven years working, volunteering and doing research with sub-Saharan male asylum seekers in Malta, where he was looking into the social, economic dimensions of their livelihoods. Currently Mr. Cassar is reading a part-time Masters in Education for Sustainable Development. He work with Agenzija Zghazagh, at Youth.Inc a programme aimed at developing skills and building capacity of young people between 16 - 21 through non-formal educational practices. At the moment he is coordinating the set-up of an Eco Campus with Agenzija Zghazagh, aiming at introducing citizen membership, stakeholders dialogue and ecological responsibility at a micro-level with the young people who are participating in the Youth.Inc programme.

Anna Zammit has been a lecturer in Sociology at Ġian Franġisk Abela Juniour College since 1997. For a number of years, she was active within the green party Alternattive Demokratika and was local councillor for Alternattiva from 1993 to 1996. Anna Zammit has written on migration in an article in the volume entitled ‘Ta’ Barra Minn Hawn’, published by l-Akkademja tal-Malti, on food issues in the KKG publication ‘Kieku l-Ikel Jitkellem’, and on the environment in the volume ‘Social Transitions in Maltese Society’. Anna Zammit has also actively participated in discussions organized by the Koperattiva Kummerċ Ġust (KKĠ), in particular, on issues related to the environment and to food. Her current interests include rural sociology and feminist literature.

Lorna Muscat had been working within the civil society sector for the past 9 years. She has been living and working in Malta, with SOS Malta for 3 years developing and implementing projects with civil society, including and specifically in partnership with other organisations here in Malta and across Europe. In the UK, Lorna Muscat worked with CAFOD, an overseas development agency, for 5 years specifically focusing on the capacity building of local grassroots organisations in Africa and Latin America. Lorna has a wide range of experience of working on a one to one and group basis with organisations both in Malta and abroad to strengthen their institutional structures, their capacity for sustainability and their strategic work approach.