Jack In The Green ethical gift shop is all about supporting community.
This is the orphanage you help to support by buying your gifts from Jack In The Green my small business. My main supplier gives me regular updates about his travels to various communities and the people he meets. The news about this orphanage is especially uplifting.
Mr Chatterjee and David
Mr Chatterjee in India is doing a fantastic job with the orphanage and by shopping with Jack In The Green ethical gift shop you help support over twenty children who are getting a good education, have a decent standard of living and even weekly art lessons.
Here is a picture of the kids with David, my supplier, the art and computer teachers. He travelled to the east coast to visit Serampore and the hometown of Mr Chatterjee (his man in India). Serampore is where all the jute and cotton bags and packaging products come from. Mr Chatterjee runs a factory with his longstanding and loyal team of workers, beavering away making products.
About Serampore, India
It's one of the poorest places that my supplier David visits, although little improvements are seen, better street lighting, an actual park, albeit very tiny and new high rise property development being built with apartments advertised from 7 lac - about £8,000. He says the people here are lovely and despite the obvious poverty, there are no beggars and I understand crime is very rare. He visits the orphanage regularly and they always put on some kind of production where the kids can demonstrate their improving English with renditions and singing.
A Short Story From David About One Of His Visits To The Orphanage
"This time I said - no need to do all that stuff (formal meetings) - I'll just come for a cup of tea and a chat. Thinking I could see day to day life at the home. I'd got Mr Chatterjee to phone, whist we was in Delhi to request a no-fuss visit.
We arrived late because of traffic, and in the outdoor canopy area I find all twenty-four children sat patiently in neat lines cross-legged on the floor, small ones at the front bigger at the back. A line of chairs a small table and a cup of tea. "Welcome Mr David" they all say in unison as we enter.
Mr Chatterjee and I sit down, we are given cups of milky char and Mr Kundu (the orphanage owner) and the art teacher we hired stand looking at us. We sip the tea, the kids all watching us and smiling, Mr Kundo and the teacher watching us smiling. "This is not what I had in mind" I say to Mr Chatterjee under my breath. So I ask Mr Kundu what they normally do on a Sunday evening.. "Yes sir, they do homework, play games and watch cricket on television".
"Oh!" I say.. "That's good.. let's do that then". Mr Kundo is wobbling his head from side to side. "Oh no sir, Mr David sir, all that is cancelled because you are coming for tea".
So embarrassing.. they really got me here.. then I remember the kids are entered in a local art competition been put on by the town temple. "Mr Kundu could the kids show me their artworks?" They don't need much encouraging before Mr Kundu can tell them - they all run off to find drawing pads and lining up to proudly show me the art one by one. There are one or two kids with clear talent. Then the traditional group high fiving, a few pictures and everyone is relaxed and informal."
Transforming The Orphanage
In India Mr Chatterjee works hard and unstintingly to support the children's home. In 2013 there was no running water, electricity the roof was broken in and the children were dressed in little more than rags. After fixing the buildings and making it nice in recent years there has been investment in teachers, an English teacher, a computer teacher, and an Art teacher. They even take part in art competitions.
The Orphans Have A Bright Future
Now as they come of age the children are getting decent jobs and David says they can chat in pretty good English. This is what ethical gift shopping is all about! When you support an ethical businesses like mine I can support ethical suppliers and this way communities benefit.
I Believe In Community
I believe in community. For me communities are made of trees, wildlife and people. It is our responsibility as human beings to care for and protection this planet and all who live on it, both human and other-than human.
That is why for every £5 spent a tree is planting with Ancient and Sacred Trees social enterprise celebrating planting and protecting trees and rewilding.
This is why when you buy from Jack In The Green money supports this children's home too. More than this it empowers people to help themselves rather than an outside agency coming in. This is about respecting communities and enabling them, and people like Mr Chatterjee, to continue doing what they do.
We can change the world by changing our buying habits and supporting small ethical businesses!
Shopping Responsibly Brings Blessings For The Children
Help me and David support Mister Chatterjee with this children's home and give these children the security, education, skills and love they deserve.