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The success of this playground will pave the way for more eco-friendly and sustainable sports infrastructure built in the future.
Kuala Lumpur, October 26 2022 – EcoKnights, an environmental sustainability organization along with partners — Dow, a global materials science company, and Life Line Clothing Malaysia, a textile recycling company, announced the launch of Malaysia’s first playground with its surface refurbished using rubber granules from recycled shoes. The recycled shoes were from the Old Soles New Life campaign where used shoes are recycled into sports infrastructures including jogging tracks, fitness corners and playgrounds. The unique built is the first of its kind in the country and is located at Sekolah Kebangsaan Bukit Tadom (A) School in Banting, Selangor.
The Old Soles New Life campaign launched three months ago on 20 July has successfully repurposed some of its collected used shoes into this more eco-friendly and sustainable playground surface. The success of this playground lends confidence to more such builds in the future and for the Old Soles New Life campaign to become self-sustainable in the long run. Three months after its launch, the campaign has collected over 10,700 pairs of shoes or 3,000 kgs of shoes, preventing the shoes from ending up in landfills for hundreds of years, which aligns with the project’s goal of diverting waste away from landfills and is one of the nation’s more prominent waste management solutions. With close to 30 shoe collection points placed across Klang Valley, Kuala Lumpur and Johor, there are plans to add more.
Reducing waste generation and increasing recycling rates will contribute to the development of a greener global community, paving the way to a circular economy from the ground up. The event was graced by Y.M Tengku Dato’ Dr. Hishammuddin Zaizi, following his statement on the positive results of these partnerships between NGOs and stakeholders. “The goal of sustainable construction is to create projects that benefit society and the environment, and more companies are needed to support this type of initiative. This project’s collection of 10,000 pairs of shoes is encouraging for Malaysia’s recycling efforts.” He mentioned
“Dow is proud to contribute expertise and technology towards building this playground. We advocate the use of recycled and safer materials, and with our environmentally friendly binders, we are confident that this playground will be welcomed by children,” said Paul Fong, Country Director for Dow Malaysia and Singapore. “As one of the key campaign partners for Old Soles New Life, we are excited to see that the wheel of the circular economy has started rotating through this built.” He added
“This campaign demonstrates how good and strong support from the local community, authorities, and councils will result in a good business model that creates job opportunities that can pique the interest of more people in eco-friendly products that last longer and use safer materials,” said Dr. Yasmin Rasyid, Founder and President of EcoKnights.
While Mr Dale Warren, CEO of Life Line Clothing Malaysia, emphasised the importance of making a larger change beginning with the community itself. He stated, “Overconsumption is one of the issues that occur in the local context; thus, the importance of having such a project, introducing a circular economy.” It recycles what we consume at one point and repurposes it for another purpose.”
Referring to Sekolah Kebangsaan Bukit Tadom (A), underwent a tragic flood in December 2021, damaging the compound including the groundless school playground. Continuous efforts from the campaign have successfully revitalized the school playground as part of the collective responsibility to help the community and improve students’ lives by providing them with a safe and secure playing environment. Using rubber granules from collected shoe soles, combined with Dow’s water-based and solvent-free binder technology, will provide a more environmentally friendly and safe playground surface option, as part of an initiative to reduce waste.
“The playground is an essential facility for our preschool children, and it was severely damaged by last year’s flood.” “Thankfully, the Old Soles New Life project was successful in improving our school’s infrastructure, ensuring our children’s safety, and allowing them to freely enjoy the playground,” said Pn Mimi Hidayah, Headmaster of SK Bukit Tadom (A), who represented the school community on the day.
Society’s future and present well-being are dependent on both sustainable growth and climate action. According to the Department of Statistics Malaysia (DSM), Malaysia’s recycling rate in 2019 surpassed the predetermined target of 28.1%, which is an increase of 3.5% compared to 24.6% in 2018. In the following year under the authority of Solid Waste Corporation (SWCorp), the recycling rate recorded in the country was 30.67%. This positive trend can be attributed to the involvement of individuals and social groups who are environmentally conscious and keen on resolving waste management issues while also supporting Malaysian communities.
Notes to Editor:
EcoKnights® is an impact-driven sustainability organisation that provides and delivers development and environmental interventions to communities, government agencies, learning institutions, and companies to mobilise and catalyse the stakeholders towards sustainable development across trans- and interdisciplinary fields to build bridges towards achieving sustainable communities and companies across four main pillars. Each pillar helps to strengthen the legacy of EcoKnights as it empowers the Knights to ideate, create, run and organise meaningful projects to impart long-lasting sustainable and economic impact to the country.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines global breadth; asset integration and scale; focused innovation and materials science expertise; leading business positions; and environmental, social and governance (ESG) leadership to achieve profitable growth and deliver a sustainable future. The Company’s ambition is to become the most innovative, customer-centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company in the world. Dow’s portfolio of plastics, industrial intermediates, coatings and silicones businesses delivers a broad range of differentiated, science-based products and solutions for its customers in high-growth market segments, such as packaging, infrastructure, mobility and consumer applications. Dow operates 104 manufacturing sites in 31 countries and employs approximately 35,700 people. Dow delivered sales of approximately $55 billion in 2021. References to Dow or the Company mean Dow Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information, please visit www.dow.com or follow @DowNewsroom on Twitter.
ABOUT LIFE LINE CLOTHING MALAYSIA (LLCM)
Life Line Clothing Malaysia (LLCM) was formed in 2013 with one goal in mind to reduce Malaysia’s fabric waste pollution and divert textiles away from landfills. LLCM collect used textiles and household good across Malaysia by working closely with the communities, corporations and local governments. LLCM also offer hundreds of textile drop-off locations and frequently holds collection drives throughout the country by working hand-in-hand with a number of institutions including schools, places of worship and universities but also developing strong relations with small and large companies. In order to help local charities finance their admirable causes, LLCM also collaborates with them to generate significant revenue by providing the infrastructure and logistics for the collections.
Old Soles, New Life
Old Soles New Life is a shoe recycling program initiated by EcoKnights, Dow and LLCM to introduce Malaysia’s inaugural shoe waste ecosystem. More details about this campaign are retrievable at this link: https://ecoknights.org.my/oldsolesnewlife/
*For media inquiries, you may contact:
Mobile: +60 115634 2344
Kow Sin Yee
Mobile: +65 9815 9557
Life Line Clothing Malaysia:
Mobile: +60 18666 2004
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