Friday, November 5, 2010

MTV EMA 2010 nominees to receive gifts from Ghana

Something unique is going to happen on Sunday 7th November, at the MTV European Music Awards 2010 when the show goes to Madrid. For the first time in the history of MTV EMA’s, all the nominees will be given locally manufactured gifts from Ghana as part of the official merchandise.

If you are wondering what Ghana has to offer to the award-winning lyricists, then you are probably thinking that the souvenirs will be wooden artifacts and pieces of the famous Ghanaian Kente fabric. These two handiworks usually represent the country’s arts and crafts culturally, and internationally, for visitors who like to keep a piece of Ghana with them. But you guessed wrong.

For all the celebrities who are likely to win awards on the night, from Lady Gaga to Katy Perry, who both topped the nominees lists or from Justin Bieber to Eminem, they will receive the special gifts which have been made out of complete trash in Ghana.

Yes! You heard right, they will get smart looking and trendy bags of multi designs made out of plastic waste picked from the streets of Accra.

So while Rihanna may choose a tote bag, Justin Bieber might fancy a laptop bag produced out of iced yoghurt wrappers and pure water sachets.

Every year, 22,000 tons of plastic waste is generated in the capital city with only 2% recycled. You may have never thought of how the huge problem of plastic waste can solved, even with the chance of giving Bon Jovi and his celeb friends some 70pieces of plastic waste for each to keep.

So who thought of this idea?

The celebs will be saying ‘merci’, ‘gracias’ and ‘thank you’ to one man and no other than Stuart Gold, the Managing Director of TRASHY BAGS, a social enterprise based in Dzorwulu a suburb in Accra, Ghana. Stuart is bent on pushing the boundaries, to solve the plastic menace in Ghana.

Products from his company have been selected as one of the official gifts that will be waiting in the dressing rooms of one the top musical awards in the world. He first spoke publicly of this significant feat at TEDxHarambe in Accra.

“our bags have been officially selected as official gifts for all the nominees and celebrities …trying to get them to endorse our products and also inviting them to Ghana to attend our workshops..”

To him this is a tribute to his workers and all the hardworking workers in Ghana.

“...the world will recognize the fact that Ghana can come up with solutions to her own problems through innovative ways.”

Do you know of other ways by which Ghana solve or reduce its plastic waste problem?

What do you think will be the significance of the bags to the celebrities? Please share your views.

1 comment:

A. Marie said...

I LOVE the countercultural implications of making designer goods from trash. :D That said, One way to deal with waste disposal is pre-emptively. The culture of unsustainable consumption is the root of the problem. Even in the US, recycling initiatives do nothing to curb the consumption of packaged goods, so old electronics and packaging end up in local dumps where they threaten the water supply. (I live 20 miles from one such dump).

In Ghana, I'd say that the issue has to be dealt w/ pre-emptively and retro-actively- discourage pollution, waste, etc, but at the same time, we could create jobs by creating consumer goods from the "trash" just as Trashy Bags has done. It's ingenious!

I hope to come up with a solution in 2-3 years that would help marginalized women in W Africa and bring more manufacturing into the region.