Sikhumbuzo Moyo, Senior Reporter
ELEVEN Bulawayo youths, among them a 12-year-old boy, have formed a recycling company, Evolution Charity Trust that focuses on picking waste around the city and generating over US$8 000 per month through selling recycled products.
The Second Republic has availed opportunities for the young people in key sectors of the economy that are vital to the realisation of Vision 2030, to become an upper-middle-class economy.
President Mnangagwa is on record, saying the youth’s human capital base continues to be enhanced through the reconfiguration of technical vocational training centres, leadership development training programmes as well as the nurturing of youth start-ups in various sectors of the economy.
He has also urged young people to create jobs and wealth by seizing vast opportunities availed by the Second Republic and exploiting the country’s vast endowments. Evolution Charity Trust recently bought a tricycle for US$3 800 using proceeds from their business.
When Evolution Charity Trust was formed in July this year, they used to hire a vehicle to pick recyclable litter in the city.
The youths then started saving money to buy an environmentally friendly electric tricycle which they are now using to collect litter.
Yesterday, the organisation showed Bulawayo Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister Judith Ncube the tricycle during a brief ceremony held at Mhlahlandlela Government Complex.
“It’s so nice to see young people being involved in such projects and creating jobs for themselves as well as taking care of the environment. When we recently visited Victoria Falls, we were told that young people, including school children, are involved in cleaning their environs and taking charge of their environment,” she said.
“We are so happy with this project which is being spearheaded by our own youths.”
Given its rich pool of talented youths in various fields who have put shoulders to the wheel in transforming the country towards an upper middle class economy by 2030, Minister Ncube said Zimbabwe is poised to be at the apex of development.
Founder and director of Evolution Charity Trust, Mr Zenzo Siziba said the project is in line with calls by Government for youths to be innovative and self-reliant.
He said they came up with an idea of complementing Government efforts to ensure cleanliness in the country through recycling litter in an environmentally friendly way, and at the same time, creating employment for themselves.
In December 2018, President Mnangagwa launched the national clean-up campaign and declared the first Friday of each calendar month as a National Clean-Up Day.
The clean-up exercise, which is done in the spirit of creating a clean, safe and healthy environment and waste management in the country.
“I came up with an idea of grouping young people together. We agreed to be at the forefront of picking up papers, glasses and anything that can be recyclable within the city,” said Mr Siziba.
“We engaged various stakeholders such as the Government, the city council as well as Environmental Management Agency (EMA) and they cooperated with us. We do our recycling at the National Blankets premises, but the challenge we have is the place has no electricity hence we rely on a generator.”
Mr Siziba said they make an average of about US$8 000 from recycling waste.
He said while they sell most of their products to local Chinese shops, they are also looking at exploring other avenues to expand their market.
Mr Siziba said they do recycling six days a week producing up to eight tonnes of cardboard boxes selling them for a minimum of US$1 000.
“We are also looking at diversifying by producing plastic products, which are in high demand especially now that we are in the rainy season. The money that we get from the sales is enough to meet our operational s costs such as rentals and salaries,” he said.
Bulawayo City Council (BCC) corporate communications manager, Mrs Nesisa Mpofu said Evolution Charity Trust’s project is in sync with council’s vision of becoming a smart and transformative city by 2024.
“As a city, we are excited about this latest development which is in line with our vision of becoming a smart and transformative city by 2024. When we talk of smartness we are also talking about environmental smartness through green technology as we just saw moments ago, the tricycle which is electrically powered and does not pollute the environment,” she said.
“In terms of smartness and good governance, we are looking at solutions coming from the grassroots. This is a welcome initiative from our youths, particularly at this time when we recently reviewed our local environmental action plan,”
Article Source: The Chronicle