Creative support of Oxfam’s Grow campaign

Posted by Anna Kroeger Media Assistant, London and the south east

20th Jun 2012

Craftivist Collective banner


Experienced craftsters as well as newbies got together at Spitalfields City Farm, East London, to campaign for a just food system the creative way. The event was hosted by the Craftivist Collective in support of Oxfam's Grow campaign.

More than 50 enthusiastic people stitched creative messages on tomato jam jar lids (yep, tomato jam!), for example "Don't keep calm and carry on, act now for a just food system," or "Love food, hate injustice". Next, everyone will hand on their jam jars to family members, friends, MPs or local businesses to spark discussions and raise awareness.

The project was inspired by a Kenyan woman called Christine, who gave Craftivist Collective member Sarah the tomato jam recipe. Christine is part of a women's cooperative in a semi-rural suburb near Nairobi, which had lost a generation to HIV and AIDS. Consequently, lots of older women living on their own looked after orphaned children. They joined forces and created a real support network: Christine started making jam from her tomatoes, which are more drought resistant than other fruits or vegetables, and sold it on the local market. Other women tie-dyed clothes or made soap. By supporting each other and pooling their resources and knowledge, they could afford to buy uniforms to send the orphans to school.

Christine's story inspired some great discussions about the global food system and how we can work together for a world where everyone has enough to eat.

It's not over yet - how you can get involved

Missed the event? There will be more - follow @OxfamLondonSE and @Craftivists for updates. Or why not set up your own little stitch-in? Read the Craftivist Collective blog for the tomato jam recipe and a nice little instruction video.

Tomato jam; happy stitchers enjoyed some love music


Craftivists stitching messages on jam jar lids; tomato jam sandwiches (yum!); stitching in progress



Oxfam volunteer Sarah Pelham; stitching on the city farm



Musicians and craftivists



Sarah, Lucy and Nikki



Photos: Anna Kroeger



Blog post written by Anna Kroeger

Media Assistant, London and the south east

More by Anna Kroeger