The current global situation and the end of the year nearing has us reflecting back to the roots of Wellpaper and all that these 15 years have taught us when it comes to growing together in a sustainable fashion.
The magnitude of the 2004 Tsunami devastated the coastline and was seen and felt throughout the whole community. Witnessing the impact on the local community, Danny and Orly were stirred by the need for action and from here WELL – Women Empowerment through Local Livelihood – was born. As a post Tsunami-Relief effort the core aim was to provide alternative livelihood to affected families from the surrounding villages of Auroville.
The project was created with the intention to empower local village women to grow independently, not only financially but also within their family unit, through providing extensive training in building, managing and maintaining their own profit-sharing production units. Hence the women receive regular training, guidance and support in not only product development but also in areas like marketing and team management skills, as well as coaching for personal growth.
The philosophy of Wellpaper include the principles of zero-waste and no environmental pollution through up-cycling waste. What began from a hand-made basket from newspaper waste has evolved to include a wide array of creations from recycled waste.
Our approach is ecological and sustainable to the point that we do not even use electricity. From the paint to the glue the products we use are without harmful chemicals and sourced locally wherever possible. We go out of the way to make sure that the entire operation, from the making of the product to its transport are Eco-friendly and have the minimum carbon footprint.
"Green practice" is the orientation that we follow, and it keeps us conscious of how we work, the equipment and materials we use, and the overall impact that we have on the environment. Here at Wellpaper we are always educating ourselves and exploring alternative and innovative ways to assure that our products meet high standards of quality control with minimal environmental impact.
To this day one of the important achievements of Wellpaper has been the integration of women from different socio-economic backgrounds. The women have been provided financial autonomy to start their own production unit and this has helped in developing courage, self-esteem and promotes optimism for other women to come and join Wellpaper to change their life story. And today, Wellpaper is comprised of 4 independent units; Sri Mother, Sri Aurobindo, Sri Ester and Jeyam, run solely by the women.