Know the story
NOBUNTO is a South African Fair Trade manufacturer and creates high quality handcrafted products, like upcycled sculptures, hand-painted candles, handcrafted necklaces and hand-painted ceramics with the utmost attention to detail using mainly African inspired designs. NOBUNTO products are responsibly handmade with love and care for their customers, artisans and the environment.
Based in the small village Napier, about 180 km east of Cape Town, where the unemployment rate is in the region of 50%, NOBUNTO provides employment to mostly women of this disadvantaged community and guarantees a FAIR income above average for their employees.
The word NOBUNTO comes from the Sotho language, meaning “For the people“.
The company name, as well as the logo with four intertwined hands, reflects their motivation and spirit:>
Community, Cooperation, Friendship, Global Harmony, Helping Hands, Multicultural, People, Teamwork and Fair Trade.
NOBUNTO works and operates daily in accordance with the Principles of Fair Trade with relation to, amongst others, Dialogue, Transparency, Respect and Sustainability
Nobunto’s mission is, in a region with high unemployment, to alleviate poverty, not only through development of industry but to be socially, ethically, and sustainably responsible. Their vision is to preserve and use traditional artisanal skills through combining high quality materials with Fair Trade working practices.
Nobunto was assessed by an EFTA member. The EFTA (European Fair Trade Association) is an association of nine Fair Trade importers in eight European countries. Through this assessment, many of their efforts and experiences have been positively confirmed.
For several years Nobunto have been regularly audited by accredited FAIR TRADE auditors from several organisations.
NOBUNTO is sensitive and responsible with regard to the environment. Wherever possible, they make use of recycling, use sustainable resources and make environmentally conscious decisions.
Nobunto’s aim, in a region with a high unemployment rate, is to alleviate povertyand to develop a company that is not only economically successful but one that is socially responsible, ethical, and sustainable.
NOBUNTO is committed to improving the livelihoods of especially the disadvantaged people within their region through equitable trade practices, fair employment conditions, periodical accountability, impeccable management and development of social opportunities. They strive to create conditions that are safe, encourage personal growth and development, and respect cultural identity.
The working conditions within NOBUNTO comply with the Conditions of Employment Act which entails permanent contracts, fair salaries, paid holiday & sick leave and contributions to the Unemployment Fund. They deliver high safety standards in their workshop and a healthy and happy working atmosphere with regular working hours, 3 breaks per working day and all weekends off. An employee assistance fund is available to assist their artists in emergency situations.
FAIR TRADE is not a marketing badge for NOBUNTO, FAIR TRADE is, with all its challenges and room for improvement a way of life into a greater future. After establishing the business in 2010, around this mission NOBUNTO soon realised that many of their own guiding principles aligned perfectly with those of the FAIR TRADE movement. Incorporating the FAIR TRADE principles into the very core of their operations from day one is more a matter of happy coincidence, than a strategic decision.
Member of Proudly South African.
Proudly South African was established in 2001, born out of the 1998 Presidential Job Summit which was convened by the late former President Nelson Mandela. Like all government initiatives, its purpose is to work to combat the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and above all, unemployment.
Fair for Life promotes an approach of Fair Trade that allows all producers and workers who are at a socio-economic disadvantage to access a wider range of social and economic benefits. Fair Trade is part of a broader context of sustainable development within a region that safeguards and supportsthe local social fabric, particularly in rural settings. These principles hold true equally well in the Global South as the Global North and apply throughout the whole supply chain covering producers, traders, manufacturers and brand holders.
Fair Trade Tourism is a non-profit organisation promoting best-practice responsible tourism in Africa. We grow awareness about responsible tourism in Africa and assist tourism businesses to operate more sustainably through our membership and certification programmes.