Stephen Aanu Olobo
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Old Newspapers to Pencils

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania Climate Change 08 Mar 2023

Mahmoud was a jobless man who sold DVDs in the streets of Dar es salaam, after struggling for long he travelled back to his home ciry (Nairobi - Kenya) where he and his brothers decided to sell their small family house so that they could start up a business. They thought of all things but ordered a small used paper recycling machine that makes pencils.

His story starts from where and how he collects abandoned newspapers that litter the streets, newspaper vendors, and other old paper keepers till the stock gets into his stores. He narrates to us how his entire family is involved in the business and he also talks about the prices of pencil making using just a newspaper. He’s got accreditation and mentions from government, city council authorities and local media houses. The pencil Mahmoud makes are currently number one choice for school goers starting from nursery schools, primary schools, secondary schools and other specialised users across Kenya and soon getting access for external markets like Uganda, Tanzania and South Sudan.
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