Kumala Waste Bank ATENSI Center Creates Meaningful Handicraft from Waste Products

Friday, 26-November-2021 17:00

Some of the workers at the Kumala Center waste bank
Image : Indonesian Ministry of Social Affairs
Some of the workers at the Kumala Center waste bank

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - There was something interesting about the inauguration of the ATENSI 5R++ (Reuse, Reduce, Recycle, Resale and Reshare) at the Kumala Creative Center, Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta, in mid-November. Right behind the Multipurpose Cooperative managed by the Kumala Foundation, an area of ​​8x10 meters is used to process the remnants of unused goods.

A bunch of sacks containing PET bottles, glass, and plastic containers, bottle caps, and cardboard boxes were neatly tied with plastic ropes. Meanwhile, dozens of empty gallons and used wooden pallets are lined up according to their respective types in the sorting room.

Since its establishment five years ago, the Kumala Waste Bank has 379 Beneficiary Recipients(PM), consisting of residents and scavengers around Tanjung Priok. Not only sorting waste for resale to collectors, the Best Unit Waste Bank in DKI Jakarta Province in 2019 also directs its patrons to be economically productive.

"We teach the Beneficiary Recipients (PM) to create handicrafts so that their economy can improve and they don't just become scavengers," said Kumala Waste Bank's Field Coordinator, Subur, when met in North Jakarta on Monday (11/08/2021).

Using two hydraulic presses intended for pressing plastic bottles, a plastic cup ring cutting machine, and a set of used wood lathe processing tools, the PMs of the Waste Bank at Kumala Center have produced various creative products, such as coffee kuksa cups, plates, and spoons, coffee holders, signboards, as well as flower pots and vases, which are sold for around IDR45,000 to IDR200,000.

"All these products are exhibited at Gallery K'Qta (Karya Kita) and can be purchased directly or through Saung Kumala's Instagram account," said Subur.

In addition to producing creative products, the Kumala Center Waste Bank also invites PM to make savings. There are two types of savings, namely money savings, where there is no cost-cutting, and waste savings, where the cost-cutting is intended for the operational costs of the Kumala Center Waste Bank.

"Before joining, prospective customers must fill out a requirement form that must be read and understood. Usually I first ask the purpose of their joining. If the reason is that they want to receive basic necessities or they want to be noticed by the foundation, I refuse because I don't want them to be hopeful," explained Subur.

The Kumala Waste Bank is also flexible in its operations, as customers are free to deposit trash without a minimum amount and can withdraw their savings whenever there is an urgent need.

"We counted one ounce of waste savings. They can also collect groceries at the cooperative, later the balance in the waste bank savings will be deducted," said Subur.

Within a week, the Kumala Garbage Bank operational car picks up waste savings from its customers in Kali Baru, Tanah Merah, Rawa Badak, Swasembada, and Kebon Bawang.

"The operational vehicle of the Kumala Waste Bank is very active. Sometimes in a week, one area can pick up waste savings three times because during the pandemic, people are more diligent in saving waste," said Subur.

Subur admitted, the support of Dindin Komarudin as the Executive Director of the Kumala Foundation has triggered the enthusiasm of PMs in producing creative work from sorting waste and implementing the habit of waste saving.

"Abah (Dindin) is very supportive and often praises the work made by the children. The community is also helped by the Kumala Waste Bank," said Subur.

The hope is that the Kumala Garbage Bank will expand further and the government will pay attention to the fate of the scavengers.

"Sscavengers have something magical in them, therefore I want the government to care about their fate," said Subur.

The Kumala Waste Bank was inaugurated as an ATENSI Creative Center (SKA) by the Minister of Social Affairs Tri Rismaharini some time ago. The goal is to encourage the empowerment of scavengers through strengthening of entrepreneurship.

A total of 34 scavengers from Kalibaru, North Jakarta were provided with basic services and guidance, capacity building for waste management and recycling, as well as production and business practices, as well as TOT training and “ReShare” Practice in the form of Program Replication for other marginalized groups. SKA Kumala Foundation cooperates with Pertamina through Pertamina Hulu Energi (PHE).

Reporter : turkhan
Editor : turkhan