THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Stuffed away in the corners of our homes, lying unused might be cutlery, home appliances or a furniture piece, bought on an impulse or received as a gift. They might have been cast aside when they got replaced, or might have been used once, or never at all. The time has come to dust it all up and give a new life to it.
A group has pioneered an initiative to refurbish reusable goods such as home appliances and furniture and then provide it to those affected by the floods. “Like a starter kit,” says Sivaramakrishna Sarma R who pioneered the initiative.
In most homes, home appliances and furniture have been rendered useless by the floods. “All of us are used to some level of comfort. For the flood affected, it will be difficult to find employment immediately. Their focus might get diverted across various fronts. And that is why we decided to focus on refurbishing the goods. This will help jump-start their lives. They can upgrade after a while, but this will help set them off,” he adds.
It all began shortly after the launch of ‘Planters Portico’, a facebook business initiative of city resident Sivaramakrishna Sarma. The aim was to give a fresh spin to old articles in homes and transform them into art pieces. The launch coincided at a time when the floods ravaged the state. “It was while discussing with friends on how to help the affected that the idea came up. And that was how the original purpose transformed into refurbishing used goods,” says Sivaramakrishna Sarma.
The initiative is being pioneered by some students of the 1993 Economics batch of Mar Ivanios College. It is the essentials that the team is focusing on, like cutlery, cooking equipment, furniture pieces, electronic goods like the fan, emergency lights and so forth. The public can drop off the goods at the collection centres and they will be refurbished and ferried to the households hit by the floods. There are two collection points in the state, at Trivandrum and Kochi. In the city, the collection point is at the Travancore Rubber and Tea in Plamood.
“Before the distribution of the goods, we intend to get in touch with the families and ask them their requirements to avoid duplication of an asset,” he adds. “If we can help at least ten families we will be happy. Many have dropped off various articles and they are being cleaned and worked on,” he adds. The beneficiaries are being identified at the moment. They focus is on flood-hit areas like Ranni, Chengannur and Kuttanad. “Not everyone will want to use refurbished goods. So we are identifying the beneficiaries at the moment. By mid-September, we hope to give away the goods to the affected,” he says.
There are two collection points in state at Thiruvananthapuram and Kochi. In the city, the collection point is at the Travancore Rubber and Tea in Plamood