Thursday, March 23, 2023

Garments designed from recycled fabrics go on exhibition

Technical design students from the tertiary education sector will display garments made from recycled fabrics at a Fashion Show to be held at the University of Botswana (UB) Amphitheatre on June 30, courtesy of corporate greening partnerships between Somarelang Tikologo (ST) and 3Heads Holdings (3HH).

Sekwaya Pikinini, 3HH Chairman, said that the need to encourage recycling as a viable business option, especially since young Batswana created the partnership between the catering and events management company alongside ST. The viability of the economic benefits of recycling is embodied in the theme: “Endless Possibilities to a Green Economy”.

Pikinini told The Telegraph in Gaborone that: “As the organisers, we called for a minimum of 12 garments as contributions from technical design students for the UB Fashion Show drawn from Limkokwing University of Creative Technology (LUCT), Gaborone Technical College (GTC) and Francistown Technical College (FTC). To underscore the message, only garments designed from recycled fabrics and other materials would be allowed entry to the Show. The benefits of recycling among others include keeping the environment clean and giving students first hand exposure, creating gainful employment from promoting safer ways of recycling waste as well as exposing economic benefits to the business of recycling.

“Proceeds from the sale of entry tickets ranging from P100 to P250 for individual and corporate clientele will be used for funding ST’s administration of environmental projects scattered throughout the country. We are anticipating to raise between P40 000 and P60 000 for efficient project administration and viability. During the Show, we will be providing food and have invited Liquorama for beverages through a cash bar.”

Pikinini said the Company decided to chip in on the Fashion Show to avoid clashing with their daily routine and allowing ST personnel to devote more time to create more capacity building on environmental awareness programmes.

ST Project Manager Boris Sesanyane said the Japanese Ambassador to Botswana will officially launch the green crafts retailing project at Gakhibane on July 3 to benefit women-led households. The project has been designed to serve as model in preparation for the roll-out of similar prototypes at Middlepits, Draihoek, New Xade and Tshane. According to Sesanyane Botswana’s Environmental Watch Body has through the creation of ‘green crafts retailing’ spread a clear message on the benefits of recycling as a bankable business bringing food on the table.

He said on stream is ST’s greening up project in Khakhea involving the afforestation of open spaces and discouraging cutting down trees for energy use. Alongside tree planting, ST has also started turnkey projects in bee keeping and Setswana chicken breeding for income generation.

“In Khakhea the chicken project has been a resounding success. Of late, we conducted a hierarchical chicken redistribution among nine beneficiaries with each receiving five chickens from current chicken projects. At the moment the tree planting projects conducted in public spaces have been highly successful based on physical count of the planted species. For example, out of 2 250 trees planted, more than 1 900 have so far survived the harsh weather conditions as the counting is still in progress,” he said.

In September, ST will mount a mass tree planting of 2 500 indigenous species in Khakhea on a 400 square metre piece of land donated by the local Farmers Association. ST will work hand in hand with the Khakhea Conservation Committee and pay half of the Water Utilities Corporation water bill to the local Village Development Committee (VDC) for sustaining the project.

Despite a few failures, Khakhea bee keeping is progressing with some farmers improving their bottom lines having acquired skills for making candles from bees wax.

With the acquisition of land rights and water from the Tonota Land Board, the tree planting project in Makhomoto will also begin in September, 14 kilometres away (from Tonota). The Forestry Commission has been conducting crash courses for the local communities on tree planting to ensure project viability. Bee keeping has, however, not done well due to shortage of water.

He said the poultry project in Makhomoto should serve as a model for other areas because some of the most enterprising farmers are obtaining live chickens for breeding from the Ministry of Agriculture free of charge. “One beneficiary recently received 25 chickens and is building capacity to accommodate a larger number.

“We are working hard to address community needs through our projects. We make regular visits or contact the farmers by phone to ensure projects are on track. Already, we are implementing projects based on successful models in places such as Khakhea.”


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