Though she was born in the US by Nigerian parents, she always longed to return to Nigeria as she has spent her early years between Nigeria and America. In 2009, she made the big trip and returned to Ibadan, a city in the south-west region of Nigeria. Having eyes for business opportunities while solving societal problems, she found an opportunity from the blooming aquatic weeds on Nigeria’s waterways. 2012, she founded MitiMeth, a company that produces home and personal accessories from aquatic weeds.
Aquatic weeds poses a major challenge to aquatic health, local communities and fishermen. The weeds deplete nutritional resources in their surroundings, leading to a decline in the fish population, they clog water channels, impeding water transportation, affecting the livelihood of the communities.
Achenyo read about an Asian report of communities who had harvested the invasive water hyacinth and transformed it to beautiful works of art. That struck a chord in her and she went for it. She reached out to few artisans who were skilled in weaving from palm and rattan and together they produced a beautiful table and a wastebasket.
In 2013, her company was awarded a grant from the Federal Government of Nigeria and she has grown the company and employ seven full-time staff.
Since its formation, MitiMeth, has branched out into eight communities, mostly in the Niger Delta region with many water ways. MitiMeth trains and educates residents on how to make the most of this scourge and transform it into a money yielding venture. Looking into the future, it has plans to train 80 more communities within the next two years in the Niger Delta, the southwest and the northeast of Nigeria.
Achenyo’s products go through a rigorous production process before they are finally packaged for distribution. First, the weeds are harvested from several local water channels and dried out in the sun for days. After which, they are then processed into the rope needed to weave products together.
Achenyo isn’t just solving an environmental problem, she is making entrepreneurs out of it and making a worthy living too.