ChuChu, a Myanmar green-based handicraft startup, is a single-storey building located on the southern bank of the Yangon River, across from downtown Yangon, designed with the recycled waste items. The roof of the building is designed from old tires with the walls made up of glass bottles and the lampshades from melted plastic. The ChuChu’s building represents a mission to make people aware of the use of waste and educate masses about waste materials.
ChuChu’s Handicrafts Products
ChuChu, which was named after the Burmese for “plastic house,” is based on Dala Township, the suburb city where the streets are littered with garbage. It is a company that sells fashionable handicraft products made through recycling from the thousands of tons of waste dumped in Yangon every day.
The 68-year-old, Wendy Neampui, the managing director of the business, founded the handicrafts manufacturing startup in 2014 with the help of an Italian non-profit organization, Cesvi.
Citing the design of the house is intended a mission about waste, she said she started the business of recycling the waste and transform into fashionable products from the internet. Mentioning a technique she learned from the internet about stitching plastic sheets and ironing them to make a colorful patchwork bottle holder, she said, “I wanted to transform trash from an ugly landfill site into beautiful items.”
The business trained dozens of designers who crafted day-to-day use products such as wallets made out of potato chip packets to laptop covers made from cement bags as well as house-decorating items made from the recycled materials. Neampui described, “Our project… is not only to work on making beautiful things from trash but also to educate people that trash can be a decoration in the home.”
Myanmar’s Environmental Problems
According to a government source on the global environment report, Myanmar sees more than 2,500 tons of trash dumped in public places every day from the 5 million people and much of these waste are laid piling up on streets and in waterways since various cities are constantly making efforts for rapid urbanization.
The country is currently facing issues relating to air pollution and the air quality of the various cities are found among the worst in the globe because people usually burn their waste materials in the street.
Neampui claimed that her enterprise was one of the right steps which would help in solving the problems that cities are presently facing as a result of discarding the waste in public. She described her ambition, “With this technique, I can help save the environment and earn a living.”
Meanwhile, she explained the struggling face of her enterprise that it was hard to convince people to buy products made from scavenged items. So, most of the crafted items of the company ended up making souvenir items by targeting tourists.
Friedor Jeske, a German waste management specialist who is also a managing director at ChuChu, said, the aim of such establishment was that people could buy the products considering the values the company held for. Referring to the company’s struggle, Jeske said “That’s a little bit of a tough goal… But we are getting there … slowly.”
I’m Roshan, a journalist, blogger and music lover. I like covering global news related to finance, business, and technology. Focusing on the collection of true and reliable information, I rely on working by conducting interviews with business leaders and talking to the inside sources of companies.
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