Say what you want about North Court, but on your average day it definitely lacks an assortment of quality home-made jams. The same can be said for floppy bow-ties and hand-made doilies. Luckily, 25 May was not your average day, as UMSU’s Student Market took over North Court to allow young entrepreneurs the opportunity to sell their wares.
The market boasted a large assortment of vintage clothing, books, baked goods, jewellery, henna tattooing, palm readings, fairy floss and many other products and services for sale. All stalls were run by students, who applied for stall space from UMSU, with no entry cost.
“The aim of the market was to allow students to operate their stalls without the additional cost pressures associated with other markets,” said UMSU President Rachel Withers. “We hope that store vendors had a positive experience and managed to make a profit.”
A large theme of the market was social justice, with many stalls opting to donate their proceeds to charity.
One such stall was run by the UMSU Wom*n’s Department, who sold badges for the Safe Steps Family Violence Response Centre. “Domestic violence support services are underfunded, especially after recent cuts in the Federal Budget,” said Wom*n’s Officers Allison Ballantyne and Lucy Curtis. “Violence against women is a national emergency, but it isn’t being taken seriously enough.”
“It is wonderful that many stalls have opted to donate to charity,” said Withers. “The market is ultimately run for the benefit of the students themselves, so an equally good way to spend profits is on alleviating the heavy cost of living pressures which many students face.”
The steady stream of customers has left UMSU officers optimistic about the possibility of running a second market in Semester Two. Fans of rocky road and vegan cakes stay tuned.