50 youth groups in the Western Urban and Western Rural Districts of Freetown have completed their training in household waste management collection on Monday 16th May 2017 and were empowered with brand-new equipment; Tricycles, Shovels, Wheel-Barrows to name but few from Freetown City council (FCC) and the Western Area Rural District Council (WARDC) at Bolling Street, Kingtom, Freetown.
The National Coordinator Presidentís Recovery Priority, (PRP) Madam Yvonne Aki-Sawyer in giving the overview of the project said a further 52 Operation Clean Freetown (OCF) waste management business youth groups are in the final stages of their training.
|Deputy council chair for WARDC Margnet Kargbo receiving the tricycle documents from Guy Warrington, British High Commissioner
She informed that operation clean Freetown (OCF) is an initiative under the Presidentís Recovery Priorities with the aim of improving public health in the city through better waste management.
Madam Yvonne added that the project is funded by UK AID and the government of Sierra Leone and led by FCC and WARDC in collaboration with the Presidentís Delivery Team, the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Ministry of Trade and Industry, Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Ministry of Youth Affairs and Freetown WASH Consortium.
She disclosed that under OCF, the household waste management will be provided by trained and equipped door to door waste collection businesses and these have been formed by young people in their various communities in Freetown and also as part of the process, these youth groups have been provided with 15 months of business development support as well as waste collection equipment.
Madam Yvonne Aki-Sawyer went on to say that the motorized tricycles will be used by the youth groups to collect waste from various households who have registered as customers and transport it to a transit point where it will be collected by Masada in Freetown or the community Cleaning Association in WARDC and taken to the dumpsites and the households will be charged just Le 2,000 for each rice bag full of solid waste collected.
She further that the youth groups have registered 58, 000 households in Freetown and its environs as customers to their company.
The British High Commissioner, Guy Warrington said many young people in Freetown have come together to seize this opportunity to clean their capital and established businesses in waste collection. He added that United Kingdom (UK) is proud to support the training and equipment for these new enterprises and funding the motorized tricycle which will be essential for the collection of householdís waste. He disclosed that household waste is a serious challenge in cities around the world and itís especially challenging in rapidly growing cities such as Freetown where resources are tight. He urged all residents in Freetown to support these young people in making a cleaner and healthier city. The Mayor of Freetown City Council, Franklin Bode Gibson said the training received by the youth group entrepreneurs was important in preparing them for the responsible delivery of their duties and proper maintenance of their equipment.Went on that as a city, they are not used to organized door to door collection and transfer by a local contractor to a local collection point and in coming months, the Operation Clean Freetown Tricycles will become a familiar sight in the streets of Freetown.
He added that door to door household waste collection is more convenient, create jobs and enable a more organized and efficient process if everyone play their part.
He said that the tricycles will remain the property of FCC and WARDC who will also oversee the activities of the youth groups through their ward committees.
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Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.