The Artisan Series: Charles Blair Ouma
While recycling bone, horn and wood, various tools and materials are used. Bone and horn in their raw state, still contains oils and enzymes that may facilitate rotting. Soaking in Hydrogen peroxide ensures that all the oils and enzymes are extracted. For cutting the raw materials into appropriate sizes, a grinder is used. It is also used to make carvings and dents on the material being reclaimed. At times, they can be dyed and stained. For this, Potassium permanganate is used. A polishing machine is used in the final stage. It is then that they are buffed in to fine horn, wood and bone jewellery.
Ouma is married and has one child. His wife is supportive of his business as he grows personally as well as his network and clientele.
He has currently employed one young man on permanent terms. Those that he calls upon to help them at the workshop vary depending on the amount of work there is to be done.
He started working with BawaHope in the year 2010, and ever since, he has seen his market grow. This growth has seen his workshop flood with prospective customers from all over the world. He says the future is very promising because BawaHope believed in him.