Friday 23 March 2012

Meet Our Community: An insight on how we work with our Partners- Part 1

AMICHOCÓ is a Colombian foundation created in 1997 by members and friends of the Cock Duque family. Concerned about the social and environmental impact that the Pan-American Highway would have on the Chocó Bio-diverse region as is well known that Choco is an incredibly beautiful place, regarded as being one of the most bio-diverse areas in the world.

Thus Amichoco has been committed to the welfare of the Choco region of Colombia and the people who live there. This has attracted CRED Foundation supports for 'Amichoco', as a charitable partner for the work they do in the area of Green Gold, and in delivering a Rainforest Reforestation Programme. Due to the fact, that mining in the Choco region has gone on for years, with terrible consequences: environmental devastation, loss of indigenous land rights, disintegration of communities, reinforcement of the guerrilla conflict, and poverty for miners and their families. With current concerns about the future of our planet riding high, this area and its indigenous peoples are of high priority.

Furthermore, Amichoco is one of 5 partners in The Green Gold Corporation, or 'Corporacion de Oro Verde'. The Green Gold Corporation is a group of organisations committed to delivering quality gold whilst getting a fair deal for workers, their communities, and the environment. It is a truly innovative project that addresses many needs. The Green Gold Corporation is addressing the needs of Indigenous communities by encouraging them to work together and form co-operatives, giving them a voice and corporate buying power. With the support of CRED Foundation to Amichoco the land is being restored through a Rainforest Reforestation programme.. CRED Foundation in partnership with Amichoco encourage families to diversify their income streams to provide a more stable way of earning a living, as seen in the Livelihoods programme (providing miners’ families with livestock for food & sale). CRED Foundation also supports their Community Education Programme.

But, importantly, miners are now able to mine gold, silver and platinum using traditional methods that respect the environment, are safe for miners, and attract a 'Fair Trade' premium. CRED Foundation is committed to continue partnering with this innovative project. As a result of our partnership, Cred Jewellery has been able to source 'green gold' and pioneer fair trade & ethical jewellery products in the UK market, resulting in a nomination for The Observer’s 'Ethical Retailer of the Year Award' for the second year running.

CRED Jewellery is also a founder member of the international Association for Responsible Mining, (ARM) a global organisation that looks to replicate the success of The Green Gold Corporation in other territories.

ARM has already had much success in facilitating co-operatives in Peru and Bolivia, and many more are due to arise across Africa and South America. The common thread is that of Making Trade Fair for miners, their families, and their communities, whilst also insisting on the necessity of making mining fair for the environment too.

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