Over the past 25 years by collecting, curating and selling second-hand we are proud to have committed £7.5 million supporting 50 projects in 30 countries around the world. Thank you to our great Traid community for donating and shopping at Traid, your support helps us to make a real difference to the lives of garments workers around the world. Read on to find out more about our 25 years of good work.

On Tuesday 15th June 1999 Traid opened its doors starting with four charity shops and a network of clothing banks to raise funds to fight global poverty. In our first year of funding we partnered with NGOs including Care International and UNICEF to support vital work in Angola and India, educating girls and young people, improving access to water and sanitation, and supporting communities to live free from the fear of landmines. We committed £374,000 of funding towards these projects and successfully: 

  • Set up 200 community schools for more than 6,000 girl children.
  • Provided 100,000 households with access to clean water and sanitation systems.
  • Cleared over 1,000 landmines and unexploded ordnance protecting over local 5,000 people.
Girls supported by our past primary education project in partnership with CARE International. India, 1999.
Children holding buckets of fresh water supported by our past clean water programme in partnership with UNICEF. Angola, 1999.

In our first decade of funding, the projects we supported transformed the lives of thousands of people, especially children and young people. As Traid grew, we wanted to make a more direct link between our work in the UK to stop the negative impacts of fast fashion, to projects benefiting the people and places making our clothes – from cotton farmers to garment workers. In 2009, we funded our very first fashion related project in Benin, training over 2,000 cotton farmers to stop using highly hazardous pesticides on their crops and instead learn how to grow organic cotton. 

This incredible work, delivered by our partners OBEPAB and PAN UK has flourished and fifteen years later we are proud to continue our support. Our funding has significantly expanded the project where the future of Benin’s cotton is organic for over 6,000 farmers, including 4,475 certified organic cotton farmers trained at the Farmers Field Schools. As a result, 83% of the organic cotton produced in Benin is grown by farmers supported by Traid.

Dr. Simplice Davo Vodouhé Coordinator of OBEPAB at a cooperative meeting of organic cotton farmers in Loholohouedji village, Benin Republic.
Delphine Bodjrenou, Gender Coordinator at OBEPAB, Benin.
Attade Gantoli from Agondji village is one farmer that has embraced organic cotton farming in Benin.

By 2012 we narrowed our fundraising focus to exclusively support international projects and partners benefiting the people and places making the fashion we love. It’s our aim to ensure that the people who make our clothes have access to safer working conditions, higher incomes, workers’ rights, better health and education opportunities. 

Children inside one of the Traid funded care centres holding their school rucksacks, Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Our achievements over the years include establishing and supporting four daycare and drop-in centres, since 2013, that provide care, good food and education for at-risk children of garment working mothers in Dhaka, Bangladesh; securing the first ever organic cotton certifications for farmers in Ethiopia in 2017 as well as training thousands of farmers to grow their crops without the use of harmful pesticides. Hear from Tadesse Amera, PAN Ethiopia’s Executive Director, on the impact of our funding.

Every year, our funding continues to improve the lives, incomes, health, and working conditions of people working in the fashion industry, and last year, we committed £578,190 to 5 projects, 3 countries, directly supporting over 17,000 cotton farmers, garment workers and their families. Every time you shop with or donate to Traid, you’re helping us to change fashion for the better. Find out more about our current projects here.