Who is Lee and what is Just Planet Café? Lee is the owner of a wonderful organic + fair trade shop & café which is located in Sunbury, Victoria.
Now I am a BIG lover of organic food and of course health food which is exactly what Just Planet Café sells but add in fair trade with that and you have a perfect place to eat and shop. What does fair trade mean you ask, well here is the definition from Wikipedia:
"Fair trade is an organised social movement that aims to help producers in developing countries to make better trading conditions and promote sustainability. It advocates the payment of a higher price to exporters as well as high social and environmental standards." For laymen's terms, see below in Lee's interview.
I came across Just Planet Café from a good friend of mine who is also into organic produce so while I was in Sunbury last week I popped on in to grab morning tea and a coffee (yum) and I just happened to be back in Sunbury a few days later and did the same thing again, this time I brought my Mum along. I highly recommend their muesli bar slice, delish! They also sell jewellery, other fashion items, nick-knacks and at the moment Easter Eggs.
So without further a-do, here is my interview with the lovely Lee:
+ How did you get to where you are today?
Through diversity, adversity and university! What I mean by that is I have had diverse careers, from advertising, graphic arts, healing arts, retail and hospitality. Adversity, in a first world context, but life struggles that shape who we are, and give us the wisdom for the challenges ahead. University is just a term to encompass all knowledge gains, I feel it is important to exercise the mind as well as the body and find myself perpetually studying. I'm currently learning about sustainable community development at Monash. Its an area I am very interested in at the moment.
+ What motivates you each and every day?
Purpose. We all have one, a sense of calling, that passion in your heart for changing the world through your chosen path whatever that is. It can be something small, local or global, it's all relevant and equally needed. For me personally, it has always been about equality and social justice. I feel right at home with fair trade, it is not a charity, it's about trading with people any where in the world on equal terms, not trying to exploit their need for financial gain. It's so sad that most of our large corporations do this everyday. Fair trade fights back, providing real income for families, and putting the power back in the farmers hands.
+ What quote do you live by at the moment?
"Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. On a quiet day I can hear her breathing." ~ Arundhati Roy.
+ What has been your biggest struggle on your journey?
My biggest struggle on my journey has been the same as many women, the fight to be treated as an equal. I see the same problems today that I fought for in the 1970's, women are still incredibly under represented in all industries at the higher levels and in Government. Globally, women are not even close to getting the rights we enjoy here. As far as I am concerned, we are not free until our sisters are free too.
+ What food can you not live without?
I don't know where to start! I love food, cheese would have to be up there, chocolate, raspberries and anything my husband cooks!
+ Do you have a daily routine? If so, what is it?
I wish! I've always struggled with this. Within a day I make sure certain things happen, exercise, coffee, good food, spiritual food, time with family, the dog and the chickens, time to read; but they occur in a random order. It's chaotic but always interesting.
+ What would you tell your 14 year old self?
Be creative, paint, write and reflect. Develop a spiritual life, don't take yourself too seriously and laugh as much as possible. I would tell her to enjoy the small things. That success in life is not measured in money or possessions but the relationships you treasure. To develop your God given talents and follow your heart, not the way of the world.
+ How do you want to be remembered?
As a good mum and grandmother and great grandmother; yes I would like to live a long life, it's great here on earth.
Thank you so much Lee for taking part in my interview series, your answers are so inspiring and positive!
If you would like to visit Just Planet Café, and I highly recommend you do, you can find all their details on their website or visit them on Facebook and be sure to LIKE their page. It is so important that we all support fair trade and from my experiences in Cambodia, slave labour and child labour is so common and it needs to stop.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this interview and if fair trade is something you would like to support. Leave your comments below...
Be happy & healthy,