Back To School! Your Essential Fair Trade School Supply List


We know it's still July (we love summer too!). But when summer draws to a close, school is just around the corner— and the last thing you want is to be unprepared for the first day.

You're helping global kids with every order!

When you shop fair trade for back-to-school, you support small-scale, global artisans and farmers and help children around the world attend school. Many of our partners use sales of their handcrafts to fund education programs for girls, students from low-income families, and artisans' children.

To make getting ready for the first day of school easier, we put together a fair trade back-to-school supplies list! Get a great start on the school year knowing global kids are getting a great start on theirs, too.

Fair Trade School Supplies for Students

Start your favorite student's year off right with one-of-a-kind school supplies as unique as they are.

  1. Fair Trade Backpacks

    A backpack is one of the most important pieces of back-to-school gear a student needs. It's carried every day, stuffed with books, papers, and snacks, and needs to stand up to heavy wear and tear. When you purchase a backpack, you want to go for quality. Our Mandi Backpack is a great choice for older students. It's made of genuine leather (meaning it'll last a long time!), and it supports artisans in India earning vital income for their handcrafts. Or, choose the eco-friendly Recycled Bottle Backpack, made from 26 plastic water bottles and perfect for hauling school books and more across campus.

  2. Tiffin Lunch Set

  3. Tiffin Lunch Set

    Taking lunch to school is healthier and less expensive than purchasing one in the school cafeteria, so why not do it in fair trade style? Our easy-to-clean, stainless steel Tiffin Lunch Set is perfect for salads, snacks, and more, and is crafted by artisans in India. It also helps eliminate the use of plastic bags! Add the Steel Snack Containers for a bite to eat in-between classes.

  4. Kantha Pouches

    It's too easy for pencils, highlighters, erasers, and other school supplies to get lost. Keep them together in a handmade kantha pouch! Every handmade bag is hand-embroidered with kantha stitching by artisans in East India, who are keeping traditional crafting techniques alive. Since each pouch is made with recycled sari, each one is truly unique-- no one else will have one like it.

Fair Trade School Supplies for Teachers

An interesting classroom is one of the best ways to start the school year off right. Prepare with fair trade!

  1. Handmade Garlands

    Dress up a classroom wall with our fair trade garland! These handmade home accents are perfect for adding a splash of color to any blank space, and it's one-of-a-kind. Whether it's soft flowers crafted from recycled sari by artisans in India, colorful felt stars and balls from artisans in Nepal, or sustainable abaca butterflies and flowers from the Philippines, each garland makes for a unique and easy way to spruce up a book nook, bulletin board, or desk.

  2. Mango Wood Mandala Mail Station

  3. Mandala Mail Station

    Keep paper clips, thumb tacks, pencils, erasers and more neat and sorted with a mango wood organizer! Etched with beautiful mandala designs then whitewashed for rustic appeal, this organizer is great for keeping the top of your desk tidy. Each one is crafted by artisans in India earning fair wages for their work.

  4. Fair Trade Bookends

    Nothing says school like books, and as a teacher, you want to make reading interesting and fun. Start with your shelves by getting a pair of unique handmade bookends!. Each one is handmade with sustainable, hand-carved stone, making them an eco-friendly way to keep your favorite titles upright. These beautiful pieces also serve as one-of-a-kind shelf décor, and paired with some colorful books, make any reading corner special.

Fair Trade School Supplies for Parents

Sometimes, school is more stressful for parents than it is for students! Survive the school year with fair trade pick-me-ups.

  1. Fair Trade Coffee

    To get through the morning, you need a good cup of coffee. At SERRV, we carry some of the most flavorful fair trade coffee around! Whether you're a dark roast or a light roast person, our organic coffee selection will meet your caffeine needs. Drink it from a ceramic mug from Vietnam and pair it with some toast and all-natural jam from eSwatini for a delicious global breakfast.

  2. Beautiful Day Granola Gift Box

    Start your day deliciously with a Beautiful Day Granola Gift Box. This tasty set features flavorful granola and granola bars filled with wholesome and healthy ingredients like oats, local honey, dried fruits, ancient grains, and more. Each bar and package of granola is made by refugees in Rhode Island earning fair wages and learning important job skills. Help them get a new start on their life in America while you get a good start on the school day!

  3. Handmade Spa Essentials

    When you have had it up to here and need a little stress relief, pamper yourself with a fair trade spa day (or night!). Fill a bath with all-natural bath salts from South Africa, made with fragrant essential oils and real sea salt, and soak the stress away. Work out the tension with mango wood massage rollers from India, and when you're done, sit back in a handmade bath robe and eye mask from India.

All-natural bath salts

Handmade shibori bath robe

For even more back-to-school must-haves, check out our handmade Back to School collection featuring useful and stylish handcrafts from around the world. Have back-to-school necessities that aren't on this list, or want to show us global handcrafts in your classroom? Send us an email at Here's to a happy school year!

Tags:   Gifts  

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