Hannah and Sarah share a work assignment at Las Mujeres Ambientalistas, the paper making co-op that the group had the pleasure of visiting while traveling in Estelí. As was mentioned in the Estelí blog, the co-op is run by women and was created as a way for them to have a safe working environment so that they can make a living. The paper is made completely from recycled paper and organic matter. When we visited the women, we were able to bring an entire garbage bag full of paper that the other students had gathered throughout their study portion in Jinotepe. This was their way of making a contribution to the co-op.
Most of Hannah’s and Sarah’s time has been spent helping the women with the paper production, and we were able to see their work first hand during our visit. The girls showed us a room filled with the drying boards that contained the many sheets of paper they had created. It was interesting to hear them talk about the process and see the different shades of brightly colored paper. The women at the co-op were very pleased with Hannah’s and Sarah’s work and expressed to us how much of a help they have been to the group. Hanna’s mother commented that after seeing the process just once, Hannah and Sarah were able to take off on their own and work independently, which gave the women of the co-op time to tend to other jobs. Unfortunately, the drying process tends to dictate their productivity, and since we are in the rainy season now most of the work has come to a standstill while the women wait for the paper to dry.
The only good thing about the downtime is that it gives Hannah and Sarah time to design and create some of the many bookmarks, cards, photo frames and other products created at the co-op. If you are interested in seeing or purchasing some of the products you can visit their on-line store at www.EnvironCards.org/store-pages.html
Jen and Lisa