Luang Prabang, Laos
Jungle Jar is a revolutionary social enterprise which connects rural communities in Laos to the global marketplace.
Sourcing bamboo from local, surrounding jungle, Jungle Jar works with rural villagers to create simple, handmade, 100% sustainable bamboo water bottles which can be personalized using laser etching.
Bamboo is replanted and is a great, lightweight, and versatile alternative to plastic.
The Jungle Jar social enterprise started in February 2021 in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Many local families began to suffer significant losses of income due to boarder closures and a lack of tourists from the cultural capital and central city of Luang Prabang.
Jungle Jar offers supplementary income to villagers, and empowers women and older members of villages to diversify from subsistence farming.
The enterprise also provides education trips for high school and university students interested in social enterprise.
Many young people in Laos are taken out of high school by their parents in order to help work the land.
Jungle Jar recognises the struggle many families face in affording the transport, food and accommodation necessary to send their children to high school. In addition to water bottle production therefore, this far-reaching, social enterprise also provides funding to cover the expenses required for local youth to finish their high school education.
Jungle Jar currently has plans to build a high school dormitory out of reclaimed plastic bottles which will sleep eight students free of charge.
Luang Prabang is the cultural capital of Laos and a UNESCO protected area which attracts thousands of tourists annually.
Jungle Jar is active in Luang Prabang's local market place and aims to have it’s sustainable water bottles available in hotels and surrounding tourist market spaces as well.
The challenges this sustainable enterprise face include working efficiently with the nation’s poor infrastructure, and navigating the dangers of the rainy season.
For more information about Jungle Jar, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/Junglejarsrule/
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