• Ten Thousand Villages Ten Thousand Villages


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Mission Statement

TenThousand Villages has principles of operation for fair trade

  1. We honor the value of seeking to bring justice and hope to the poor.
  2. We trade with artisan groups who pay fair wages and demonstrate concern for their members' welfare.
  3. We provide consistent purchases, advances and prompt final payments to artisans.
  4. We increase market share in North America for fairly traded handicrafts.
  5. We market quality products that are crafted by underemployed artisans.
  6. We build sustainable operations using a variety of sales channels, including a network of stores with a common identity.
  7. We choose handicrafts that reflect and reinforce rich cultural traditions, that are environmentally sensitive and which appeal to North American consumers.
  8. We encourage North American customers to learn about fair trade and to appreciate artisansâ  cultural heritage and life circumstances with joy and respect.
  9. We use resources carefully and value volunteers who work in our North American operations.


Ten Thousand Villages is part of a worldwide movement striving to practice fair trade. Fair trade is an alternative approach to conventional international trade. It is a trading partnership aimed at sustainable development for excluded and disadvantaged producers. It seeks to do this by providing better trading conditions, by raising awareness and by campaigning. Selling artisans' products in our stores means providing immediate assistance for food, jobs, healthcare, education and housing where there may not be otherwise.

Many artisans tell us that fair trade brings them much more than regular work and fair pay. They begin to see hope for the future, earn dignity and respect in their community and experience joy in being able to provide for their families.

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