Published On: Thu, Jun 28th, 2018

Social workplace gives disabled people and waste a second chance

WILLEMSTAD - A new social workplace gives both disabled people and waste a 'second chance'. It is an initiative of Andy Kirchner and his foundation Second Life Curacao.

During a diving accident six years ago, his girlfriend died and Kirchner became disabled. He decided to give himself a second chance during his rehabilitation process by recycling waste.

Social work

"Actually, it is the 'upcycling' because it gives new life to an existing product." He makes new products from cans, coconuts, calabash and waste wood.

Other people with disabilities also deserve a 'second chance', according to Kirchner at one point. And that is why he builds a social workshop in Hofi Kòrsou near Fuik. "We want to start with six people who have a physical disability. That can be in a wheelchair or with any other physical difficulty."

Improve living standards

The participants learn creative work and social skills. He wants to give them work that is difficult on the island and thus improve their standard of living. "I speak from my own experience with the social service and how I was helped with my welfare income. Or actually was not helped. With more support, I could have achieved more and be much further."

Reporting by Caribbean Network
Photo credit: Roelie van Beek

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