Marika Ire­land and Mar­garethe DeCafneyer

Fairlady - - CLEAN UP YOUR ACT - plan­tas­

‘We’ve picked up just un­der 1000 bags, which is about 11kg of plas­tic.’

‘We pick up plas­tic and turn it into jew­ellery that we sell on­line,’ says Mar­garethe. ‘We’ve been able to up­skill 10 women, but our star em­ployee is a lady from Zim­babwe called Boni. She can cro­chet very neatly and fast, so as soon as we have a lot of bags, we send them to her. She makes the cord for us and we make the jew­ellery.’ For ev­ery ban­gle they sell, R60 goes to­wards the tur­tle re­hab ini­tia­tive at Cape Town’s Two Oceans Aquar­ium – the aquar­ium res­cues dis­tressed sea tur­tles and re­ha­bil­i­tates them be­fore re­leas­ing them along the Western Cape coast. ‘It costs about R12 per day, so R60 buys five days of re­hab.’

Marika says that the busi­ness isn’t very scal­able at the mo­ment be­cause they’re try­ing to do a mil­lion other things at the same time. ‘But ev­ery now and again, some­one comes across our web­site and or­ders all our stock.’

Since they started the project in No­vem­ber last year, Marika and Marg have do­nated just over R10000 to the aquar­ium. ‘That adds up to about a thou­sand and some­thing tur­tle days that we’ve spon­sored. And we’ve picked up just un­der a 1000 bags, which is about 11kg of plas­tic.’

They’re also look­ing into mak­ing jew­ellery out of sea glass. ‘We want to start set­ting it in re­cy­cled sil­ver and mak­ing charms. We want some­thing that’s a lit­tle more up­mar­ket – this is our an­swer to di­a­monds! In our view, di­a­monds are made by na­ture but re­fined by man; sea glass is made by man but re­fined by na­ture.’

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