Waste management during corona times!
Last week we were contacted by the company Iterio, who has been contributing to our work for many years, and asked how they could support our work more now during corona times, as they understand that it is tough for the local people. Yesterday we had a meeting to address some of the things we really want to solve, and decided on this, which is a fundamental issue for both human and environment, both in the short corona term and long term!
Iterio has decided to step in and help us get started with garbage disposal in the village! Does it sound unsexy? Far from it! It's magical!
Every Friday, 6 women from each of the village's various neighborhoods come to the center to take care of the external cleaning. They pick up garbage, sort the waste, burn what needs to be burned in the incinerator, compost what needs to be composted, put glass, plastic and metal apart. When they were hired as employees, it was a stated strategy to offer the assignment, so that one person per neighborhood in the village was allowed to apply for, ie distribute the income-generating services so that all neighborhoods in the village had someone with a paid job.
Since cleaning in itself is not income generating, it has had a very limited activity, one morning a week. However, the group of women have occasionally raised different ideas about how they could expand their work.
One idea was to start garbage disposal for the whole village! They explained that it will probably take a while to get everyone on track, and even longer before people want to pay for it, but just imagine if they could go around every week and pick up the garbage in the households! Given that many people do not see the plastic bags as a problem, it was a project that without considerable start-up capital would be a bit hard to get going.
However, the benefits are many:
What we need to do:
- To inform at a village meeting about what is about to start, who (the women) is starting it, why and the benefits
- Training in waste and recycling at household level
- Manufacture of barrels that the households are allowed to "rent"
- Purchase of donkey and wagon, which the women use to collect the garbage
- Protective clothing, gloves etc
What we want to achieve:
- Better health (reduced spread of infection, less dangerous smoke, etc)
- Better environment
- Increased understanding of how waste management affects both the family, society and nature.
- A decent salary for the 6 women who are in charge in this activity, so that they can support their (large) families. (Not least now during corona times, this is considered a huge relief!)
So we are now celebrating the fact that it is time to start the women's waste management project! Thank you Iterio! We love you!