Old vehicle tyres can be seen as useless in normal life but for one Shihan Kinyanjui, the old tyres are his raw materials through his innovative artisan work.
The 50 years’ resident of Rhonda estate on the outskirts of Nakuru Town has taken up the innovative move using the old tyres to come up with various products for land scaping and beautification of schools and homes.
When we meet him at his workshop situated in Rhonda estate which he operates in partnership with Samuel Njuguna, Kinyanjui says it is the demand for land scaping and beautification aspect that drived him into the innovative initiative.
Through using old tyres as main materials, Kinyanjui has been able to come up with playing equipments for the ECD pupils as witnessed in some of the schools replacing the metallic ones.
In order to win the heart s of the ECD kids, Kinyanjui opted to come up with playing materials from the old tyres in form the big 5 wild animals.
Though he just began the work earlier 2018, already the fruits are being seen in various schools such as Race track Primary, Menengai Primary, St.Mary’s Girls Primary among others.
Caroline Njuguna is the head teacher Racetrack Primary school in Flamingo ward, Nakuru East sub county-one of the schools that has embraced the work done by Mr.Kinyanjui.
Ms Njuguna says the playing equipments made from the old tyres are ECD kids friendly unlike the metallic ones that used to injure the kids.
She commends Kinyanjui adding that the playing equipments are also made in such a way that they co-relate with the new curriculum.
“The tyres made playing equipments are ECD children friendly and safe as compared to the metal ones hence all schools should embrace the same” she said.
The whole exercise of land scaping costs Kinyanjui him approximately Ksh.8, 000 for a complete work.
Besides the playing equipments for kids, Kinyanjui through the innovation has also ventured into flower industry by coming up with flower pots.
The unique part of his artistic work is that he makes the ports from the old tyres and they come in the design of Flamingos which is a common feature in Nakuru County.
He says, it takes him 3 to 4 days to come up with a complete one product of the same.
The work involves acquiring the old tyres, cutting them in the shape required as per the product to be made, welding here and there and painting to produce a desired product.
However, like any other business, Kinyanjui has faced several challenges among them; some tyres have wires within which make them hazardous for him when coming up with shapes.
He adds that housing of the materials for use is still another challenge besides the expenses of electricity as far as welding is concerned.
“A times electricity is cut off when you are yet to complete your work which becomes a challenge” he says.
Furthermore, he still faces a challenge of materials such as tyres and paints as he says the society is yet to understand that beautiful products can be made from old tyres.
“The paints are costly and then people are yet to understand that nice products can come from old tyres” says Kinyanjui.
So far in his workshop he has been able to work on 10 flamingos, 7 swans, Elephant and Zebra –products that have all been taken by customers.
To him, creativity and innovation is the way to go and each and every little knowledge that one has is paramount and should be maximized on.
His advice to the youths is to embrace the polytechnics in order to acquires skills that can help them become productive and self reliant.
“Youths should embrace the polytechnics in order for them to acquire skills that will see them become self reliant” says Kinyanjui.
Kinyanjui looks forward to expanding his ideas and training many youths in society over the same in order to empower them.
He is also calling on the county governments to ensure they support artists and innovative minds who are trying to empower the society through various aspects.
“The government more so the counties should try and recognize us through empowerment programs” he says.
Indeed Kinyanjui is just one of the many innovative persons in the society who if empowered through government initiatives can be able to transform the society in a major way as far as the big 4 agenda is concerned.
PHOTO/Pristone Mambili:Some of the flower pots made by Kinyanjui in form of flamingos.