For my The World in 25 People project, I decided to research the country Ecuador which in in South America. At this moment I’m not very well informed of this country, I don’t know anything about Ecuador except I know that some fruit are grown here like bananas because of the hot climates. Personally, I am excited and curious to learn about this new country to see what life is like there, also I am slightly scared because I think they have a very poor economic system here. People in this country make or live off of $2 a day which would make life difficult. I feel like life there would be a challenge because it has a very hot climate and there isn’t a lot of money in the system also I feel like they do a lot of hard work in unfit conditions and make very little money. I would like to learn about the culture of the people in Ecuador and how they live off of what the receive.
I decided to research how sports balls are made and who makes the product. I chose this product because I wanted to see how sports balls were made because the majority of my life consists of playing sports. You would think that some sports balls from Transnational Corporations like Nike and Adidas are made in factories but actually 75% of sports balls are hand stitched by workers in India, China, Indonesia and Pakistan. These workers stitch balls at their own homes or in factories as part of a production line.
As consumers some things about the production of this product that we should know, is that the majority of the workforce is made up of women and children. These workers often face discrimination and rarely have a voice. The workers are paid based on the quantity of the pieces sewn, as a result workers often work long hours in extremely hot conditions , also they rarely receive legal minimum wages. A study by the International Labour Organization estimates that over 7,000 children, ages ranged from 5-14 work up to 11 hours to help their families make a larger income by stitching balls, just in the Sialkot region alone.
Fairtrade standards for sports balls makes sure that there is no discrimination against women and there will be no child labour. It also provides a minimum wage and an additional Premium to invest in social and economic initiatives in the communities. I was really surprised when I found out that companies like Nike use child labour and discriminate women to make their products.