With Valentine’s Day around the corner, we know getting the perfect gift is a must, but have you thought about how you’ll wrap that gift? Ever considered beautiful paper that is completely handmade from a Lokta bark? Well if you didn’t before you will after you read about our fantastic producer and all the amazing artisans that craft the paper with all-natural materials.
Get Paper Industry (GPI) is an inspiring Fair Trade producer in the Himalayan mountains of Nepal. Creating jobs, providing schooling and making thousands of lives better, they do not stop at just creating beautiful paper. They even have partnerships with a name you may recognise! So stick around to find out why you should be wrapping your presents in this gorgeously unique paper!
Who Are Get Paper?
Get Paper Industry is a Fair Trade handmade paper products cooperative based in a small village in Kathmandu, Nepal. The founder, Milan, began the cooperative in 1985 using environmentally friendly ways to create paper. At that time all their paper was made using Lokta. Lokta is a shrub that grows in the foothills of the Himalayas at altitudes in excess of 6500ft and is abundant in supply. Harvesting this sustainable plant helps preserve the fragile ecosystem in Nepal and gives regular fairly paid work to the people of the many mountain villages.
In 1988, Get Paper Industry began a relationship with The Body Shop who taught them how to create other types of recycled paper allowing them to expand the products that they produced. In 1989, GPI became a Fair Trade supplier for The Body Shop and has continued to produce packaging for them ever since. Please feel free to check out the video above to see more about the partnership they have with The Body Shop. We created a partnership with them in 2010 and have continued to work with them from that point on!
We don’t just love the products they make, we love the sustainability behind the products as well as the amazing work that Get Paper do in their community. Being able to help create a comfortable life for the people of Nepal is also a tremendous bonus.
What Does Get Paper Industry Do?
Besides creating hundreds of jobs with fair wages and making environmentally friendly paper products, this cooperative does everything it can to provide better livelihoods for the locals.
Main concerns for GPI is providing girls education, AIDS awareness, environmental activities and producing income-generating activities. GPI allocate 4% of all profits to help them continue their social efforts.
In Nepal, there is a lot of discrimination against women receiving an education. Most girls will end up going straight to work in either the fields or at home once they hit puberty with many being married off at a very young age. Many Nepalese families do not see girls’ education as a priority.
Get Paper tries to break the stigma! They have created and renovated five different primary schools. More than 200 girls are getting a scholarship every year for attending these schools. Paper High truly believes everyone deserves an education and a chance to provide a better life for themselves which is why we sponsor 10 girls to go to school.
Aids Awareness Program
In Nepal, HIV is characterised as a concentrated epidemic with an estimated 50,000 people living with the disease in Nepal alone. Since 1992, Get Paper has continued its program to spread awareness of this life-threatening disease.
At this time, more than 50 people work full time with Get Paper to perform AIDS awareness in the streets of Nepal. They work with other NGOs, universities, charities and the people of Nepal to perform various awareness activities.
Get Paper understands the importance of looking after our environment which is why they also play a big part in the environmental sector. They not only provide an eco-friendly paper with natural materials they also make sure to grow plants in its place. With its plantation program, the community has planted more than 10,000 plants!
Program Against Girls Trafficking
According to a Nepal National Human Rights Commission report, 7,000 women and children are trafficked every year. Many are trafficked on the promise of providing profitable jobs. Nepal experts attribute poverty to be the main cause of human trafficking in the country.
Get Paper knows the drastic nature of trafficking in the country which is why they run programs to prevent girls from being trafficked by providing a group that they can be involved in. The girls that are part of the group are actively engaged in campaigns against trafficking in their respective areas.
They also run credit and saving programs to help the girls manage their money earnt. At the moment there are 60 groups with nearly 1000 girls in each group! Get Paper also helps the groups by providing support to the girls with income-generating programs such as chicken farming, goat keeping, buffalo keeping, cow raising, paper making, beauty parlour, cafe, felt production.
What Paper Can I Buy?
We have a wide range of the beautifully crafted eco-friendly paper in many designs. Here are a few of the different packs of paper available from our site. You can now buy this paper with the knowledge that it doesn’t just look good it does a lot of good too. By buying this paper you are supporting the artisans that craft it, the earth and also the efforts Get Paper provides. If you would like to see the full range then click here.
Get Paper is truly inspiring in all that they do and we are so proud and grateful to be working alongside them. They are really great people and genuinely care for others whilst also trying to provide a better life for themselves and their community. We are very happy to showcase even an ounce of the amazing work they do and look forward to the bright future ahead for them and our relationship with them.
Want to know more about us? Have a look at our Ethics and Story. If you have a burning question then you are more then welcome to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org where our team will respond as soon as possible. Or leave a comment below and let us know what you think!