Women in Baa Kihaadhoo took over the management and operations of the island’s Eco Centro as part of International Women’s Day celebrations. Women’s Development Committees and council members from Dharavandhoo, Dhonfanu, Kamadhoo, Kudarikilu and Kendhoo also joined in the celebrations.
The takeover, organised by Kihadhoo’s 26 Zero Waste Champions, aims to provide an opportunity for women to learn more about household segregation, effective waste management and provide a starting point for women interested in a career in professional waste management.
The Island’s Eco Centro, built with the support of Soneva Namoona, provides a well-organised and well-equipped space to process waste. Powerful compactors and mobile glass crushers assist in making the waste more manageable with a ten-fold reduction in waste volume.
With the goal of increasing awareness of sustainable waste management, the 26 Zero Waste Champions of Kihaadhoo organise various events engaging the community and acts as a conduit between the community and the Island’s council. The zero waste champions were trained by Soneva Namoona.
“I learned a lot while working at the Eco Centro today. Today we proved that anyone can do this kind of work. Opportunities like this are important on a day like International Women’s Day to inspire young women to follow their passions whatever that may be,” said Ratheeba Moosa, one of the participants.
“It gives us great pleasure to see the Zero Waste Champions of Kihaadhoo taking such initiatives on the island. There may be just 26 champions now, but they are inspiring the whole island to be full of Zero Waste Champions. What we are seeing here is a change in mindset around waste at a community level. We hope to see such change at the national level.” said Katarzyna Maria Izydorczyk (Kash), Director of Soneva Namoona Operations and Community Engagement.
Soneva Namoona is a Non-Governmental Organization that is pioneering a new approach to waste management in the Maldives, by focusing on island-level solutions. Having piloted their sustainable waste management programs in Baa Atoll, the NGO recently signed an MoU with Noonu Atoll Council to provide strategic and technical assistance to implement the Namoona Sustainable Waste Management model across the Noonu Atoll.