In 2010, Living Earth Foundation launched a multi-country Waste to Wealth programme in Cameroon, Uganda and Nigeria. The project “Improved Living Conditions in Urban Slums: Public Private Partnerships in Cameroon, Uganda and Nigeria” is funded by the European Union, Comic Relief and the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DfID). It is a five-year programme, running from 2010 – 2015. In 2013, Living Earth started a pilot Waste to Wealth project in Sierra Leone.
We are working with local partners Fondation Camerounaise de la Terre Vivante in Douala, Cameroon; Anpez Centre for Environment and Development in Port Harcourt, Nigeria; Living Earth Uganda in Kampala, Uganda and ACEDO and The Collective in Sierra Leone.
Why a Waste to Wealth programme?
The Waste to Wealth programme responds to specific challenges faced by poor people living in urban slums. In Douala, Port Harcourt and Kampala, rapid urbanization is placing increased pressure on the environment. There is the same amount of land but more people; the same number of toilets but more human waste; more rubbish and even less space to dispose of it. Existing waste management systems are unable to cope with the increased demands and rubbish is left to rot by the roadside, polluting water sources, contributing to flooding and posing serious health risks for local communities.
The onus for managing the physical environment in poor areas remains with the communities themselves: if they don’t address the problems of household waste, poor public sanitation, clogged and disease-spreading drainage, no-one will do it for them.
We recognise that cities represent potential powerhouses for driving development. The urban poor are, necessarily, creative and entrepreneurial; however circumstances conspire against them and their economic activities. Lack of credit, training, skills and employment rights all restrict their ability to earn money and all too often they remain an underutilized resource in their city’s development.
Living Earth’s Waste to Wealth programme takes a tri-sector approach, encouraging all sectors of society to develop collaborative solutions to tackle the challenges of waste management. It seeks to capitalize on the potential of slum dwellers to drive changes in their cities through the establishment of micro level public-private partnerships and the promotion of income generating ‘waste to wealth’ activities.
About this website
This website has been created as a resource hub for individuals, entrepreneurs, businesses and development practitioners interested in Waste to Wealth activities.