Waste-preneurship is a green entrepreneurship model that addresses waste management using cost effective processes. They could be engaged in waste collection, land filling, incineration, recycling, upcycling or reusing of wastes. Waste mismanagement is one of the major challenges of our sustainability drive in Africa and wastepreneurs are solving this problem through processes that offer social benefits and profitability. 

There are quite a number of wastepreneurs with different models of operation. REES Africa had a chat with one of its consultants who doubles up as the founder of Green Recycler. Muhammed Sanusi’s Green Recycler is less than a year old but this story is one that will definitely inspire you. 

Start, Even If  it’s Small 

Green Recycler is a social enterprise providing waste recovery and data mining solutions in Abuja. They recover wastes from households and send to partner organizations like Chanja datti for upcycling and recycling. Users are provided with customized bins, and a mobile app which makes waste recovery seamless and cost effective. 

The inspiration for Green Recycler came during some of his clean up engagements with REES Africa. He noticed that a few hours after the volunteers had passionately educated and cleaned up dirty market environments, the place was soon restored to its default state. He kept thinking of a sustainable solution and sometime around January 2022 he began to work on Green Recycler. Full business operations began in April.

Great Ideas could  come from Bits and Pieces Here and There

Muhammed Sanusi studied Geology and graduated in 2016 from Kano Science and Technology University. After school he worked as a field researcher with TQM, he manages Top Sale Solution- an ICT firm and also facilitates with Ecolyte Technical Academy. Muhammed is committed to the achievement of SDG 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure), SDG 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities), and SDG 13 (Climate Action). Muhammed may not be practicing what he studied at school but he acknowledges that his field experience, volunteering activities at REES Africa and engagements with Fatima, the founder of FAM4FUTURE have been quite instrumental to his work. Right now, Green Recycler is his latest business engagement through which he utilizes his skills as a climate and digital Success advocate . 

Good Businesses Solve Problems 

“We are on a mission to provide innovative and sustainable waste recovery solutions that enhance the well-being of our community and the environment”.

The current waste management processes in most places promote health challenges in poor communities. On a global level, Greenhouse gases from dumpsites escape into the environment and increase global temperature. The dramatic increase in waste-related issues each year contributes significantly to climate change. 

Another issue of significance is the limited to no way of determining the exact amount of waste generated in Nigeria and Sub-Saharan Africa at large which makes our waste management data inaccessible to researchers and other key stakeholders. 

Green Recycler is helping to solve waste management issues while contributing to environmental sustainability, waste data generation for future research and innovation purposes and encouraging a circular economy. 

In 2023 Green Recycler plans to expand its reach, launch its green BIN, deploy its mobile app and ultimately increase our partners and user base.

There’s no Success without Struggle 

“Generally starting a business in Nigeria is daring enough, but we thank God for where we are… One of the biggest challenges in waste management generally is logistics and  others such as little awareness and limited funding”

Muhammed admits that it’s not been all rosy since he began his business. He documents his business progress and challenges on his linkedIn newsletter Green Recycler. He says that having a clear focus on his goal has been helpful. In the midst of his many daunting challenges, he boldly affirms that Green Recycler  is here to stay!

Dear Young people, get involved…

“For the Nigerian youth I would always say there is hope for our generation all we have to do is to hang in there but as we do that, we need to keep learning and upgrading our skills. This could involve reading books, attending seminars, or joining online communities to stay up-to-date on the latest developments and best practices in any industry you find yourself. 

Also, you must learn to not just talk about the problems – do something about them. Whether it’s joining a local NGO, or starting your own business, there are many ways to get involved and make a difference in today’s world”.

Sustainability cannot be achieved by sitting in the sidelines, we all need to get involved in one way or the other. 

Muhammed’s story is very relatable; starting a business is laborious. If we all let our challenges and excuses prevent us, we would never take a step. I pray you find the courage to put your great ideas to practice and the strength to keep pushing through and may you find fulfillment as you solve problems in your community.

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