Flame Tree Initiative

Social Entrepreneurship for African Development

The Flame Tree Initiative partners with African universities to foster scalable, socially-minded businesses that accelerate regional change. We believe that training, mentoring and launching development enterprises -- businesses that confront global development challenges -- is a potent way to contribute to the new, innovative era in Africa.

Veronica and Milton, Glorious Natural Products

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Veronica and Milton's Story
We are a husband and wife team running Glorious Natural Products out of the home we share with our little girl, Retinah. In 2015, Milton’s mother was in her late 70s and constantly complaining of severe joints pains. She had been referred to several private clinics and her medical bills were piling up.

Finally, one doctor advised her to eat more foods rich in vitamin C, calcium and iron, listing baobab fruit among the suggested foods. So she added a glass of baobab juice with honey to her morning and evening routine and within a month her pain had significantly diminished.

And not only was she feeling better, but she was able to save money as her prescriptions were nearly ten times the cost of the baobab juice.

Baobab Superfruit Powder is just one of the natural products that Veronica and Milton are cultivating with individual farmers across Malawi. These products all address key challenges in both rural and urban areas including illness, chronic pain, and malnutrition, all at a cost far lower than standard pharmaceuticals and with no side effects.

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About Glorious Natural Products
Glorious Natural Products (GNP) is a Malawian-owned business that brings together unique, quality natural health products while promoting environmental sustainability and reforestation in Malawi. Our natural products are hidden treasures, crafted from indigenous plants with little-known, but potent health benefits. By farming them, we encourage local farmers to invest in the health of their local environment by creating an easy avenue to profit that benefits the local ecosystem, rural families, and the consumers who use our products.

 

GNP’s Impact

  • GNP will produce sawdust blocks from the milled shells of Baobab fruit to use as a source of heating.
  • GNP will contribute 10% of its monthly revenue towards community development in the form of soft loans for rural women to start small businesses selling baobab powder and other natural products.
  • GNP will undertake a reforestation project in flood prone areas, for natural trees including baobab trees, through trainings and awareness campaigns in collaboration with local stakeholders.
  • GNP will use 5% of its export revenue to provide bicycles for secondary school girls who travel long distances for their studies.
  • GNP will open its own processing factory where 70% of the staff will be women.

 

GNP's Fundraising Goals
GNP has grown quickly with no outside capital, but they are currently struggling to meet the huge demand for their products. They are looking to raise $2,500 to expand their business through the purchase of raw materials, small processing machinery and packaging. This money will go towards:

  • Outsourcing of raw materials for superfruit powder from local communities particularly women
  • A small electricity driven processing machine for powders
  • Packaging and labeling materials for GNP products.
  • Awareness campaigns for Baobab Superfruit Powder targeting the general public, the elderly and other food processing companies
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