ReCharkha upcycles waste plastic such a plastic bags, biscuits, or wafer wrappers, and provides livelihood opportunities to Tribal women, and youth in Dadar, and Nagar Haveli.
ReCharkha aims at conserving the environment and heritage, by upcycling waste plastic, reviving the traditional craft of Handloom Weaving. It also presses on creating awareness regarding not creating any further waste. Their products range in different categories like home décor, tote bags, office & school essentials, hanging closets, fitness accessories, and much more. They have upcycled 1,500,000+ Waste Plastic bags up until now!
Freedom from plastic pollution
Started in 2020, ReCharkha is a non-profit arm of two well-established companies namely reCharkha – The EcoSocial Tribe and ProEarth Ecosystems Private Limited. The meaning behind their brand name ReCharkha is quite interesting.
” Re means again, and afresh or anew in English, with its origin from Latin Char-kha = is the spinning wheel in Persian. It is Reviving the Charkha to get rid of Plastic pollution, environmental degradation, and rural unemployment! Our logo shows a tribal woman, spinning her wheel to recycle, and symbolizes the GLOBAL movement of Freedom from plastic pollution.“, said Founder Amita Deshpande of ReCharkha.
ReCharkha works on its 5-Hour Model of waste management religiously and promotes it among people. This model is to Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Repair, and then Recycle. They want people to say no to plastic, reduce their consumption, reuse whatever they have! They want people to avoid the use and throw lifestyle and then go for recycling.
ReCharkha makes all of its products from waste plastics like yarn (which is made with plastic bottles), wrappers, glittery papers, biscuits, chips packets, and natural materials like cotton. It has been 5 years, but ReCharkha is still trying to find a whole market for its upcycled products.” It is one tough journey, but there is demand, and people have been very supportive”, said Amita, founder of Recharkha
This is how they Upcycles
Amita is an IT engineer and loves trekking. Talking about how did she start ReCharkha, she said ” I kept seeing a lot of plastic everywhere, even in the mountains, and so it triggered me very much. That’s when I decided to jump into this sector, and kept rural livelihood along with upcycling as my main focus.”, she mentioned.
ReCharkha is a team of 19 people and is working hard to serve a large number of tribal women, and youth. They have a wide variety of gorgeous products and even custom designs them if you are ordering in Bulk. “Colour customizing is an issue, as the waste plastic can vary in colours. Even we don’t know what is going to be there in our bags.”, she said.
Talking about how they source their waste plastic, Amita said, “A lot of our customers and supporters send us their plastics. But we buy a bulk of waste plastic from the waste pickers in Pune.”. Along with the tribal women, and youth, ReCharkha is also supporting waste pickers, and pay them for the plastic which can’t get them money.
One of the most difficult things ReCharkha faces is to make people believe that their products are 100% plastic. ” One thing that we really work hard for is to create awareness on how to compost wastes. Because once you use a garbage bag for the wet waste, it is going to be in the landfill. We only can use the dry garbage bags, otherwise, the quality will be a mess. Also, if the waste plastic packs are badly torn, we can’t use them either”, she added.
Their products are pretty durable, and they can easily last for 10 to 12 years. Their products take 2-3 labor days to be made and depend on how many people are working on them.
ReCharkha is doing a great job by providing livelihood & reducing waste plastic through its products! We can also help them by donating our waste plastics. If you are in Pune, you can directly drop it at their office. But, if you are not, you can still courier it in bulk. ” Please take care of the carbon footprints. Send it in bulk once a year, if that’s what it takes, and use compostable packaging for it. Unfortunately, we can’t use oil packs, milk packs, tetra packs, small sachets, and straws. So, neither send them to us nor use them for yourselves”, she further added.
ReCharkha is happily accepting the Poly carry bags, food wrappers, gift wraps, and cassettes. You can donate your waste plastics by clicking here. Also, be eco-friendly, and help ReCharckha reach new heights by shopping their cool products here.