By Tamba Borbor
A total of Ten Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) have received a four-day training on Plastic Paving and Bio-Charcoal from Welthungerhilfe (WHH) Improved Waste Management Activities in Cities Project in collaboration with the Koidu New Sembehun City Council (KNSCC).
The said training started on Wednesday 17th and ended om Saturday 21st June 2020.
Speaking at the official opening of the training, the Mayor of Koidu City. Mathew Komba Sam noted the importance of SMEs in the effective management of waste in the municipality while urging those who would be selected on merit to acquire life skills to be economically independent in the future.
Mayor Sam expressed thanks and appreciation to WHH for capacitating the Council in efficiently managing waste in the Koidu Municipality with the ongoing construction of a Waste Management Department (WMD) at D.O. Barracks and a Controlled Disposal Site at Boroma village in Tankoro Chiefdom.
“I had admired the operations of WHH when I was working at the Bank before becoming the Mayor of KNSCC and soon after I was elected I pushed very hard to ensure the people of Koidu City benefit from WHH project,” Mayor Komba Sam recalled; adding that “the Welthungerhilfe has already impacted the City in various ways.”
He added that with the intervention of WHH, there is heightened awareness about waste in the municipality as “Waste is now equal to Wealth.”
The Administrative and Finance Officer of the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) in Kono District, Alusine Maxin Bangura lauded the efforts of WHH in the are of effective waste management and disposal in the Koidu municipality.
“Waste management is a global environmental challenge and Koidu is not an exception… It is not always about generating waste but shouldering the responsibility to effectively ensure the environment is not negatively impacted,” Alusine stated.
SMEs he says are an effective and an alternative means to the drive to managing waste in the country which he maintained would create cleaner and hygienic communities.
David Sahr Joe, a representative from Civil Society in Kono District, singled out WHH for praise as one of the INGO involved in Waste management. “Most illnesses suffered by people is as a result of poor sanitation and improper disposal of waste,” Sahr Joe stated, adding that the trainees must realise that acquiring skills to recycle waste can earn them a permanent source of livelihood.
Ansu Bangura, WHH Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEAL) officer explained the rationale in conducting such a training while stressing the involvement of the Council in effective waste management.
“The involvement of SMEs is to ensure that the waste generated and disposed of is brought back into the communities in various recycled form which would be useful to the people,” Ansu explained; urging the trainees to know that they are opening up new opportunities in their lives with the acquisition of invaluable skills in recycling of waste.
A total of twenty participants representing ten SMEs took part in the training which on the last day saw the production of paving stones commonly called Dallets made of plastic and bio-charcoal made of sawdust, rice straw amongst other organic materials.
Two facilitators experienced in organic recycling were brought in by WHH from Bo and Makeni to conduct the training.
By Tamba Borbor
Public Relations Officer
Welthungerhilfe Improved Waste Management Project