"Malawian Ladies, where are your woven shopping baskets?"
(Michael Chimaliza in The Nation, 25th October 2015)
Everyone can understand why people like to use plastic bags. They are inexpensive, light, strong and convenient. Yet there are many reasons for saying NO to plastic bags. Many of these plastic bags are intended for single use and are then simply thrown away or burned. But they are difficult to dispose of and hazardous to health.
Often, however, there are much better alternatives. Why not take your cloth bag with you when you go to the market? Then there is no need to have your groceries packaged in disposable plastic bags. You can simply refuse plastic bags and put the groceries in your own woven, colourful, and real Malawian shopping bag. Be proud to be Malawian and to sustain your country's beauty!
In January 2019 we started the production of 'awareness bags' made of fabrics. The project provides work for several girls and women. Through these bags we want to encourage people to refuse plastic bags and bring always their own bag. The bags contain a clear message: "CARE for God's creation / SAY NO to plastic bags / BRING a bag like this." So this is to make people aware. Reducing pollution is everyone's responsibility, we should care for God's creation. Small steps taken by many can do a lot!
In Malawi we use the bags in the context of our work as packaging materials for items that we want to distribute to people. So Rieneke could put medicines that she provides to patients in these bags. Gert will put manuals for doing Bible study in these bags, that will be distributed to the congregations. Of course we hope that the bags will be used very often afterwards, and that many people will read their message on the streets and on the markets.
To cover the costs of production we also sell these bags in the country we are coming from: the Netherlands. Dutch people really love the colourful African fabrics!