Solid Waste Management Project
Tanzania Young Eco-Protection (TAYEP) is an organization that educates and inspires young people and women on environmental conservation, waste managements and green lifestyles, as well as mobilizing them to take action.
Our current project is the
Solid Waste Management project. It is an initiative that enables low-income families to trade and recycle their household waste, preventing it from piling up and helping to solve Tanzania's acute waste management problem.
This project strives for maximum waste recovery through composting, recycling and re-use and aims at zero waste to be disposed in dump-yards and land fills.
The project has a two-sided effect: it works to improve the local environment, thereby tackling climate change, and at the same time offers continuous employment to individuals from socially and economically disadvantaged groups.
(i) Breaking the silence around climatic challenges educates and inspires young people on environmental conservation, proper waste management and green lifestyles, and mobilizes them to take actions.
(ii) Empowering youth and women in communities to own and manage environmental resources sustainably, using their indigenous knowledge and incorporating science and technology where necessary.
(iii) Creating employment for youth and women in poor communities.
(iv) Tackling rural poverty through promoting innovative sustainable systems which are environmentally sound, economically viable and socially acceptable.
HOW THE OBJECTIVES WERE ACHIEVED
The project uses local cargo bicycles to collect recyclables from households in densely populated areas and poor areas of Mwanza, which are neglected by waste disposal lorries.
The project consists of the following activities, broadly outlined:
• Segregation of waste at source
• Primary collection
• Composting of biodegradable waste
• Recycling of non-biodegradable waste
• Awareness and information campaigns.
In most communities, waste is not seen as a resource that can be refined (e.g. as nutritious compost manure or energy) or recycled (e.g. into new paper and plastic), and thereby generate wealth.
Instead, it is often treated as the evil leftover that needs to be eliminated. Moreover, waste is rarely seen as part of a cycle of production, consumption, and recovery, nor is it assessed in relation to environmental sustainability.
The Solid Waste Management project has considered waste as a resource for production through recycling to create wealth, as well as ensuring a safe stable and sustainable environment.
Through the environmental conservation awareness campaign the project harnesses ICT, new media and video conferencing.
This project has so far collected nearly 35 tons of waste using low-cost cargo bicycles that are creatively designed to transport the waste. The project has also managed to provide job opportunities to 11 youth of age 18-35 years and is looking forward to offer more as the project expands.
Some of the project stakeholders run the risk of becoming politicized and the Self Help Group members risk being used to gain political sympathy in different groups.
It is important that all parties are aware of this risk and that it is reduced as much as possible through community participation, transparency, and local ownership.
Through recycling, waste can be used for production and to create wealth as well as ensuring a safe stable and sustainable environment.