Livable Products

Livable Products: Reaching out to a new revolution of industries

Gent, BelgiumCebu, Philippines
Year Founded:
2013
Organization type: 
hybrid
Project Stage:
Growth
Budget: 
$1,000 - $10,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Livable Products is a family of projects that creates fair design products all over the world, reaching out to a new revolution of industries who are actually seeing the value of transforming forgotten materials into design products.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

WHAT IF all industries would see the value of a social approach to safe the world?
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

More then a quarter of the Filipino population lives in poverty. Cebu City is home to the largest port in the Philippines for many this is an attractive source of income. Unfortunately, overpopulation in and around the harbour creates the ideal environment for pollution, poverty and crime. Livable Products’ main goal is to address the poverty challenge by working on sustainable jobs creation and green awareness by Design.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

During the whole process, user is center placed. This includes communication with all the stakeholders, research of local waste materials and even implementing creativity trainings. Working side by side the people creates ownership, leading to a strong and interesting product, improved and approved by the residents. Afterwards, locals are inspired by the possibilities and willing to explore and innovate products in the future. In order to have a great impact we are reaching out to larger scaled industries and entrepreneurs. By implementing our new approach we actually convincing them to take a further step for a sustainable future.

Awards

OVAM ecodesign awards 2012, Macedonia Film festival 2015, ROPE hope first price, MAD Brussels 2015 (Audience Award)
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Our approach is story driven, community based and built on direct relationships. Working close means also that we need to take in count the local culture of habits. IT is important to create a good agreed balance of the work approach to be handled. For the ROPE hope project we worked together with rope recycling community' in the Philippines creating a continuous livelihood for those in need. In order to promote these finished materials and help those communities we made an award winning short movie about their lives and the process. With this documentation we involved a larger scale of entrepreneurs to work with those ROPE materials. Now we are developing different ROPE based products with several companies for a bigger impact.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Currently, we are working with one community engaging more than 30 people. So far, our communities make earnings of P1100-P15000/ month. Depending on the production capacity and orders, which we want to escalate further. Our future plan is to develop better working tools and conditions. We will introduce new products, leading to new manufacturing possibilities. Involving more people and more impact. We continue to promote and spread the story and its materials, leading towards more international visibility. This way we encourage and introduce other fields and purposes for these Products. Research and cooperation’s will increase the demand. This gives the opportunity to scale up the production and employ more people in other communities as well.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

We started out with 2 projects in the Philippines. At the beginning of 2016 we will launch two new products on the market with our larger scaled partners. Our goal is to form Livable products into a platform that provides space or feedback for future projects and designers with same intensions. We choose to work with local partners to have better penetration into the local culture and challenges. Together with these partners we're working on a global platform to change the world with a design approach. In 2017 we hope to launch our first project in the South of America and Africa will follow.
Sustainability

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

Like any other organization Livable Products has started with small investments. We have been able to grow by personal funding’s and the help of our partners. A growing social network and market resulting in a positive budget roll. Collaborating with partners allows us to divide needed investments in the future.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The strength lays not into competing but in collaborating. There are several projects with a social background that have inspired and created Livable Products as it is today. Because of transparency and storytelling we are strong in promoting the communities voices, connected to a design approach. We have the strength to market our products and share the social values at the same level.
Team

Founding Story

In 2012 Councilor Hon. Nida Cabrera challenged student Industrial Product Designer Sep Verboom to innovate the recycle programs in Barangay Luz, Philippines. The designer purchased old fans in junkshops and combined these with the rich culture of weaving by local craftsmen. After graduation Sep Verboom continued the project. The FAN lamp received an OVAM eco design award (2012). Followed by expositions around Europe. In 2014 Sep Verboom stumbled on a new interesting project that would be the main reason for the foundation of Livable Products. This new project called for a joint platform

Team

In 2012 Councilor Hon. Nida Cabrera challenged student Industrial Product Designer Sep Verboom to innovate the recycle programs in Barangay Luz, Philippines. The designer purchased old fans in junkshops and combined these with the rich culture of weaving by local craftsmen. After graduation Sep Verboom continued the project. The FAN lamp received an OVAM eco design award (2012). Followed by expositions around Europe. In 2014 Sep Verboom stumbled on a new interesting project that would be the main reason for the foundation of Livable Products. This new project called for a joint platform, named Livable Products (2014). A family of projects with similar social intensions. But also a platform that provides space or feedback for future projects and designers with same intensions.
Background
Please confirm how you heard about the Unilever Awards:

Changemakers

Please confirm your role in the initiative (eg Founder/co-Founder) and your organisational title:

Founder

Which of the 8 UN Global Goals (Sustainable Development Goals) pre-selected for this competition does your solution relate most closely to? [select all that apply]

No Poverty, Decent Work and Economic Growth, Responsible Consumption and Production, Climate Action.

Leadership and the Unilever Awards
Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.
Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?

Our European platform consists out of two main directors, supported by two interns.
For a reliable and structural communication we work together with a local company in the Philippines who are also in charge of the Production flow and quality management. Furthermore Livable Products partnered with HOWEST (High school West Flanders) to send out Industrial Product design students for internships in Cebu. Last but not least we work close with the City of Kortrijk who has a twin city relation with Cebu City working on waste and water management.