Some villagers from the northern part of Namibia are helping conserve trees by using millet stalks and leaves to make paper.
The villagers have organized themselves into a cooperative called Onankali Paper Making Cooperative in Oshikoto region, about 700 kilometers from the capital Windhoek.
Among the products they make are envelopes, note books, albums for photos and Christmas cards.
Registered with the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, the cooperative got funding from the North Central Community Enterprise Development (NCCED).
The NCCED is a non-governmental organization that empowers rural communities in the sustainable use of natural resources.
Much of the process is done by manually apart from the printing stage of the final product.
Chairperson of the cooperative Abraham Shikongo told Xinhua although they are making progress and creating employment, they still face a number of problems.
The shortage of machines makes the process too slow to meet orders.
Shikongo recalled at one time the cooperative got a big order from a Swiss company, which took them about four months to fulfill because of they did almost everything manually.
The other problem, he said, was the lack of skilled people to work on the project.
“When we pay for water, raw materials and other things, we end up with little money to pay the workers and some months are really bad in terms of profit,” he added. Enditem.