20 Dec Have you met… Eyi?
An active member under the spotlight
First name: Eyitayo (Eyi)
Profession: Business owner. Created own cremant export business, as a way to widen knowledge of this very local and unique product.
Studies: Master’s degree in 2013 in Liverpool on the subject of social enterprises. Dissertation about Fair Trade and its perception in Luxembourg.
Residence: Grevenmacher. Moved to Luxembourg in 2006.
Family: 2 boys (10 and 4)
Languages: English native speaker, also speaks French and is currently learning Luxemburgish
Hobbies: Running marathons
What made you invest money and time in OUNI?
About a year ago, my husband and I started to reflect about what we eat and how to eat in a healthier way. It triggered a consciousness of how much packaging we use and of where our food comes from. We began by researching farming associations and fair trade and then when OUNI was created, we both decided to become involved, he as a member and I as an active member.
What I like about OUNI is that it is a cooperative with a social purpose, where everyone has something unique to contribute, but also that as a business, it has to be profitable. It needs to find a balance between these social and financial components in order to create a long-term model.
Of course, it meant that I had to reorganise my life to fit it in, which was not easy, especially as a mother of two and living outside the city. I decided to shop and do my shifts on Tuesdays, which is generally when I come to town.
You were elected as a member of the Board of Directors at the June 2017 General Assembly. What was your motivation?
As part of my previous work experience in Luxembourg, I acquired some knowledge of business management and administrative aspects such as drafting minutes of board meetings. It is this experience that I wanted to bring to the cooperative.
I also wished to be part of the group that finds ideas and gives them life. I always like seeing things come to fruition. In the case of my involvement with OUNI, the question was: what more can I do? Well, this is something that I can do.
In the end, I am not a vegetarian, I am not zero-waste, but I am doing what I can every day for our environment, for our society.
Do you have a memorable experience of your hours spent working at the shop?
I enjoy the ambiance that Amélie, Chloé and Delphine have created at the shop. They have done a beautiful thing and my hope is that people continue with their shifts and show their support.
I remember talking to a customer in Luxemburgish, trying to explain Bee’s Wrap, but I had to give up when they asked if they festered. In the end, I had to direct them to the employee. FYI, Bee’s Wrap doesn’t fester
Do you have a favourite product?
I love the banana chips, which come, I think, from the Philippines. They remind me of something I used to eat back in my home country, which is plantain chips. Never underestimate the power of nostalgia!