Mariam Amaka Eluma, is a first class graduate in Software Engineering from the American University of Nigeria, and an M Sc (Distinction) in Management of Information Technology from the University of Nottingham. She is founder and product designer of Hobeei initiative. The initiative promote sharing economy and waste management.
Motivation for the Social Enterprise.
HoBeei is addressing the problem of the growing inequality gap in Nigeria by minimizing the piling up of unwanted items which results in waste. Now more than ever, as the world grapples a pandemic and a looming global recession, our consumption and spending habits will be forced to change in order to survive.In Nigeria, close to 90 million people live in extreme poverty and barely have the disposable income to afford what others no longer use but end up disposing wrongly. With a lot of people’s savings being affected as a result of price increase in goods and services and loss of jobs, it is important we find sustainable ways for people to save money by sharing items they need with each other which results in minimum waste and promote responsible consumption.
How HoBeei works
People upload their unwanted items on our platform and others who need them bid for them using our virtual tokens called Buzzes. Buzzes can be gotten for free when users perform certain activities such as signing up, uploading their own unwanted items, inviting friends etc. Buzzes can also be bought for as cheap as N150 which gives you 3000 Buzzes, which is how we keep the site running.
HoBeei was built to facilitate a sharing economy. Therefore our goal is to encourage the reuse of others items which helps improve savings and responsible consumption which benefits the environment. HoBee is also addressing the Sustainable development goals SDG10: ReducedInequalities, SDG 12: Responsible Consumption & Production and SDG 13: Climate Action.
Support or encouragement
All the people who buy into our idea by freecycling on our platform are our biggest encouragement. We also have support from LEAP Africa where I am currently doing a fellowship and they offer mentorship and network opportunities. However we have beenbootstrapping our development and are currently.
Long term plans
We intend on approaching more influencers and high profile individuals to freecycle preowned items with us as it would encourage alot of people to emulate them and also share their items.We also intend on getting more youth onboard so that they are more open to freecycling with each other especially since many Nigerian youth are currently unemployed, so this will be a great way to conserve their savings. We have alot of big things planned which we are still
working on, and will be shared in due time.
Call on Nigerians to share
We need more Nigerians to see Reuse as something beneficial and something that will greatly improve our standard of living. When more people are sharing items with each other, everyone benefits because people will then be able to look beyond their needs to cater to the needs of others because their savings have significantly improved and they have more disposable income to cater to dependents and actively contribute in fighting poverty. Also naturally our environment benefits because we are wasting less and reusing more.