Waste Paper Recycling Unit In Bhutan Employs Ex-Drug And Alcohol Addicts

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The waste paper recycling unit also manages waste, helps to keep the environment clean and reduces the import of egg trays by 50 percent.

Youngten standing proudly in front of a hard day's work in Thimphu, Bhutan. (Source: UNDP/Tim Jenkins)

 

By Neten Dorji | Kuensel

If you are wondering what to do with waste papers, you can now sell them to Bhutan’s first-ever waste paper recycling unit in Bjemina.

Egg trays are made out of these recycled paper and the fund generated from sales goes to the underprivileged. One of the beneficiaries is the Youth Development Fund (YDF).

The waste paper recycling unit is also a social enterprise

Officials from the YDF said that they spend about Nu 8 million annually on rehabilitation programmes. The waste paper recycling unit was established as a social enterprise to meet the cost of the rehabilitation programmes.

YDF’s director, Jigme Thinley, said that the machine has the capacity to produce 4,800 trays a day. “But because of limited space to dry, we produce only 3,000 trays a day.”

He added that when fully operational, the unit can produce more than 1 million egg trays per year, generating approximately Nu 936,000 in profit.

 

 

Source: Bhutanyouth.org

 

“The profit generated will be reinvested to sustain YDF’s drugs rehabilitation programme.”

Waste paper recycling unit provides employment for youth recovering from drug and alcohol addiction

Meanwhile, the waste paper recycling unit also provides employment to young people who are recovering from drug and alcohol addiction. YDF officials say that two slots are allocated for young people recovering from drugs and alcohol addiction currently.

“We are giving opportunities for people who are beneficiaries of the YDF’s drugs rehabilitation centre,” Jigme Thinley said.

On top of that, the unit also manages waste, helps to keep the environment clean and reduces the import of egg trays by 50 percent.

As of now, six people are recruited in the industry with a monthly salary of Nu 8,000. The officials say that they will double the production when demand increases.  

“We need manpower to start shift the system and we will recruit more recovering drug dependents,” an official said.

The project in-charge in Bjemina, Karma said that about 300 to 400 kg of paper waste are used for manufacturing egg trays.

“Greener Way is the main supplier of wastes and we could accommodate about 20 tonnes of waste in the area.”

YDF then sells the egg trays to the Karma One Stop Shop, which is the main importer of egg trays and distributor in the country.

According to the YDF, the Small Grants Program and Goodwill Community of USA support the programme in establishing the plant.

The Goodwill Community provides 65 percent of the budget, 30 percent are given through the Small Grants Program while five percent are covered by the YDF.

 

This article first appeared in Kuensel and has been edited for the Bhutan Times.

 


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