10 Jun CYEC started working on a zero-waste initiative!
Several years ago the CYEC started working on a zero-waste initiative. One of the significant challenges identified at that time was electronic waste. Old computers, televisions, cell phones, etc. contain toxic materials that can leach into the water supply. A team of students from Penn State Berks collaborated with students from Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology to help train youth how to handle this material safely and use it to make jewelry, table clocks and other household items.
While there is good potential for this business, the youth had a difficult time sourcing materials safely. On Friday several of us visited the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Center in Nairobi to see if they would be able to provide materials as well as training for the youth and disposal of any hazardous materials.
David, the primary youth involved in the project, and Bernard, the chair of the Zawadi Youth Enterprise Program and I had a productive visit. The staff there were very receptive of the idea and noted ours is the only business they know of in Kenya to use electronic waste in this manner. The youth plan to expand into household items such as picture frames and refrigerator magnets.
This story was in the national media here earlier this year.http://www.nation.co.ke/counties/nyeri/making-jewellery-from-e-waste/-/1954190/2164738/-/v575sb/-/index.html
We anticipate this will be a very useful collaboration for youth in this enterprise.