INDIA – 26 April 2012 –
A week-long convention, involving as many as 500 waste pickers from over 30 cities across India and countries like Nepal, Cambodia, Bangladesh, Indonesia, China, Philippines and Pakistan, began at Yashada on Tuesday. The Asian contingents will soon be joined by waste pickers and activists from African and South American countries.
The main aim of the convention is to chalk out strategies to effectively integrate waste pickers in solid waste management programmes and projects.
On Wednesday, the second day of the convention, participants visited several places across the city in the morning. They witnessed work the civic body has done to integrate waste pickers in solid waste management projects. The participants also became familiar with SWaCH’s door-to-door garbage collection in PMC and PCMC areas besides visiting sorting sheds, KKPKP’s fair trade scrap shops, and PMC’s biogas plants, some of which are managed by waste pickers.
The third day of the convention will provide a platform for waste pickers to discuss their changing role in the field. “The relative advantage and disadvantages of inclusive models versus exclusionary ones will be discussed at length before arriving at a common charter,” said a press release issued by the concerned officials.
“A special highlight of the convention is a cultural event, which includes the famous feminist street play Beti Aayi Hai by Stri Mukti Sanghatana, a puppet show highlighting the need for changing work culture of waste pickers by Vilas Kane and a drum circle using percussion instruments fashioned from junk by Taal Inc., simultaneously engaging all 500 participants,” said the release.
The International strategic workshop will take place from April 27-29. “The workshop will be represented by waste pickers’ organisations from Africa, Latin America and Asia. They will deliberate on different models of inclusion in municipal solid waste management systems and share challenges and threats that they are continuously facing on the ground. The objective of this workshop is to develop an understanding of inclusive solid waste management models among the waste pickers with a view to strengthen organising efforts towards achieving them in cities across the world,” said the release. The future course of the movement will be decided on April 30. Read original article