Social Innovation Movement (SIM), a non-profit organisation, along with Curtin University Malaysia has launched the Intergenerational (INTERGEN) Community Project.
The INTERGEN Project is aimed at generating income by closing the digital gap, minimising reliance on single-use plastic bags, and limiting textile waste.
Its local and international collaborators include Brunel University London, North Borneo University College, Curtin University Malaysia, Achim Apparel, and Circular Borneo, with support from Yayasan Hasanah.
INTERGEN encourages knowledge transfer between third-age communities and university students to close the digital gap, whilst promoting a circular economy through upcycling of used or discarded fabric sourced locally.
During the launch event, Curtin University Malaysia, Miri Homegrown fashion brand Achim Apparel, together with 20 of the Curtin University students and 20 of the community seniors created handmade and unique products, starting with the ECOBAG 2020 which uses recycled fabrics. Sales made from these eco-friendly bags generate a source of income for seniors involved in the project, making them more financially independent and reducing reliance on government handouts or their children for support.
The Miri Hub Champion from University Curtin, Dr. Ying Ying said, “The Miri Hub provides an excellent opportunity for our students and the third-age community to learn from one another. Also aiming to achieve SDGs, the INTERGEN project has kept our students active in community engagement and circularity through upcycling. It has not only widened their network but has also helped them to develop important life values and change their perception of resilient 3rd age communities. This experience has prepared them to be confident young adults who are ready to join a competitive workforce.”
SIM President, Professor Ainurul Rosli said, “Launching the third INTERGEN community hub in Sarawak is an important step towards SIM’s agenda to replicate the INTERGEN Hub for other cities outside Sabah and develop communities looking to bridge the gap between generations and foster a more inclusive society that values its senior citizens. C We look forward to seeing more seniors and the younger generation support the reduction of textile waste in landfills. Furthermore, the project reduces textile waste in landfills by repurposing fabric into unique and handmade eco-bags.
“We welcome more seniors to join this INTERGEN community project to support senior members working collaboratively to upskill themselves and become more financially independent by promoting an entrepreneurial mindset and closing the digital gap between generations,” he added.
This partnership between Curtin University Malaysia and the Social Innovation Movement in Sarawak is fostering intergenerational learning and supporting local communities. If you are a corporate entity, hotel, or textile factory looking to make a difference by donating used fabrics, contact Dr. Ying Ying at 016-8548368 of Curtin University Malaysia via WhatsApp for more information. To support vulnerable third-age communities, order your eco-friendly, handmade bags now by contacting Circular Borneo via their Instagram account (@CircularBorneo) or Whatsapp (018-9706045).