Carpentry a tool to empower B40

Mohd Faizal (left) supervises participants at Re-Kayu, which provides free carpentry training to youths from PPR and B40 communities in Klang Valley.

Social enterprise also helps jobless, former prisoners gain skills, generate income

WHO would have thought that repurposing wood waste can have such a positive impact on the lives of the B40 group and residents of People’s Housing Project (PPR)?

The impact comes in the form of viable means to generate income.

Mohd Faizal Ayob, 40, leads the way with Re-Kayu – a social enterprise dedicated to teaching carpentry and furniture-making skills through the use of recycled pallets and pine wood.

Over the past three years of its implementation, Mohd Faizal has not only assisted those who had lost their jobs to rebuild their careers, but also enabled them to earn a minimum monthly income of RM1,500.

In fact, some have become successful entrepreneurs, skilfully handling furniture orders reaching tens of thousands of ringgit.

Rahayu now accepts orders for carpentry work. — Photos: BernamaRahayu now accepts orders for carpentry work. — Photos: Bernama

Mohd Faizal told Bernama that the programme, which provided free carpentry training, had the participation of 50 youths from PPR and B40 communities in the Klang Valley.

“Throughout the two-day course, participants gain hands-on experience in carpentry and the use of power tools designed to save both energy and time.

“They learn about carpentry techniques and skills, encompassing material selection, design drawing, lamination and finishing, while honing their creativity and innovation,” he said.

He added that items produced included beds, study tables, benches and shoe racks.

According to Mohd Faizal, who was formerly lecturing at a university in Kuala Lumpur, the furniture is produced from wood sourced from warehouses and factories.

The products are not only marketed outside Klang Valley but are also available for rent for various occasions.

Mohd Helmi says carpentry has given him a satisfactory income.Mohd Helmi says carpentry has given him a satisfactory income.

“In addition to the training provided, we stay connected with participants, monitoring each carpentry task undertaken at home and offer ongoing guidance on equipment use.

“Our goal is to empower the B40 group, giving them opportunities to reach greater heights,” said Mohd Faizal, who is currently pursuing the Malaysian Skills Diploma (DKM) Level 4 in furniture technology.

Among PPRs involved in the initiative are PPR Kampung Baru Hicom Shah Alam, PPR Pantai Ria, PPR Lembah Subang, Flat Gasing Indah, Flat Puchong Permai and Pangsapuri Angkat Angsana USJ1.

The programme is also implemented with cooperation from various agencies and parties, such as Rakan Muda, local authorities and Persatuan Penempatan dan Pemulihan Penjara (Pemaaf) which works with former prisoners.

Re-Kayu aimed to actively involve former prisoners, troubled youth and the jobless through the Social Entrepreneurship and Innovative Community Cultivation Programme by giving them a second chance at a better life, said Mohd Faizal.

Re-Kayu collaborates with training centres to help participants obtain skills certificates. Re-Kayu collaborates with training centres to help participants obtain skills certificates.

The social enterprise has also launched the Return to Work Programme in partnership with the Social Security Organisation (Socso) and Malaysian Innovation Foundation.

Mohd Faizal said Re-Kayu would also collaborate with skill training centres, such as Wood Industry Skills Development Centre, to help participants acquire the Malaysian Skills Certificate to enhance their competitiveness.

When asked about his future plans, Mohd Faizal shared his aspiration to set up a social enterprise factory specialising in furniture manufacturing for both domestic and international markets.

Meanwhile, participant Rahayu Zabani, 42, said the programme had given her a platform to nurture her interest in carpentry and it helped her earn additional income.

“The facilities and equipment provided by Re-Kayu are exceptionally comprehensive, making carpentry work much easier,” said the mother of five who accepts orders for crafting furniture including tables, chairs and kitchen shelves.

Participant Mohd Helmi Mohd Sulaiman, 34, from PPR Pantai Permai, said he quit his job as an electrician to pursue a career in carpentry to better provide for his family.

“After attending the workshop in March last year, I have built kitchen cabinets for five houses and that brings in a satisfying income,” he said.

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Furniture , B40 , ppr , REKAYU


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