Olamide Babajide, a computer science graduate is tackling not only the problem of waste management in Nigeria but also creating employment. When one decides to be innovative and see the benefits of recycling trash then big ideas can be born, Babajide makes amazing furniture out of used car tyres and several other pieces of trash. Meet Babajide.
It was during a trip to the United Arabs Emirates that she discovered that a piece of art that cost several hundreds of dollars had actually been made from corn shrubs. In 2014, she launched her company Pearl Recycling with 5,000 U.S dollars, which she won through an entrepreneurship programme.
The startup’s creative works of art is made from solid waste products such as tyres, bottles, newspapers, magazines, straws, plastic cutleries, wood, unused CD tapes, sea-shells and every other solid waste product.
On its website the company describes itself as a social-oriented organisation with the mandate of recycling solid wastes into beautiful works of art- in developing countries, waste products are naturally thrown in canals and drainage, dump inside oceans or burnt in an open space.
“The air we breathe are becoming more toxic, flooding is becoming incessant, ocean lives are becoming threatened and Malaria is killing more pregnant women and children. Pathetically, government policies are not working. In a bid to stop the people from dumping wastes indecently, government came up with sanctions and policies that are simply not working,” the company says on its website.
“So, we found a way out. We understand the culture of Africans that it’s better to preach sustainability from the angle of empowerment and that is what we do…”
Quoted in Pulse Nigeria, Babajide said Nigeria has not been able to find a solution for waste management and most times government come up with sanctions, threats and penalties which are not working.
So their innovation is part of the solution.
“We are not like the everyday interior décor merchants, but ours is a different blend of interior crafting, where exquisite office equipment, like shelves, are used to beautify homes. Our personal decors are made from recycled products like woods, bottles and metals, which we turn to wall mirrors, wall frames and flower vase from unused materials.”