As the father of social entrepreneurship Bill Drayton said, “Social entrepreneurs are not content just to give a fish or teach how to fish. They will not rest until they have revolutionized the fishing industry.” Nebulart recycling Group is one such enterprise in Lesotho. Not only are they changing the game and creating a revolutionary in green products but they are inspiring change among fellow youth about creating their own businesses.

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Nebulart recycling’s focus is on renewable waste. The enterprise is not focused solely on generating profit but also on climate change. Recently the world has come to appreciate the beauty of social entrepreneurship having seen its rewards and social enterprises like Nebulart transform social capital in a way that affects the society positively. One of the founding members of the social enterprise based in Maseru, Mojabeng Moholi, spoke to Pristine magazine about their enterprise.

The organisation was born out of a need to address pollution in Maseru, help in reduction of waste and aid in sustainable development.

Moholi recounts how the name Nebulart recycling came along. “Some of the founding members were at a planetarium where we saw where the stars are recycled, which is called Orion’s belt nebula. The art in Nebulart comes from the fact that we produce artistic products.”

Sitting on Nebulart furniture is like sitting on a fantasy chair from Alice in wonderland, it is magical and every bit as comfortable as any luxurious furniture you will get.

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The organization’s work is not limited to just producing recycled materials but goes as far as working for sustainable development, that is, building houses using recycled materials, public education on climate change as well as sustainable ways in which global warming can be reduced. Their education initiatives involve the team visiting schools and various organizations to spread the word about reducing waste and recycling materials.

Going green is not easy and definitely not cheap. Moholi explained that the organization requires a lot of funding to carry out their plans.

“Most of our funding is garnered from the revenue generated by the products we produce and sell. Our products can be found at youth hot-hang-out spots. We also rent out some of the equipment to make extra money.”

Nebulart recycling consists of a diverse range of professionals ranging from engineers, computer scientists, biomedical technologists and environmental management professionals. With such a wide array of skills and knowledge, they are able to come up with fresh ideas on how to deliver environmentally friendly products. “It is certainly an advantage to have so many skilled people. For instance, as a person who studied health and biomedical technology it is easy for me to help in creating products and apply some biological concepts, likewise the environmentalist has a vast knowledge on how to protect the environment.”

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…at hangout spots

Quizzed about the organization’s future plans, Moholi said they hope to build a bioremediation plant, which will assist in rehabilitation and resuscitation of land. Furthermore the dynamic enterprise hopes to venture into earthship; where they will use tyres and bottles to build sustainable houses.

She adviced other youth who aspire to venture into the waste management industry to think outside the box.

“Don’t do what others are doing. Every missing aspect in your community is an opportunity to start a business. For instance if there is scarcity of clean water in your community and you have an idea to engineer equipment to aid in clean water, do that and run with the idea.”

By: Mantsebeng Suzan Maepe