The Jamaica Social Investment Fund (JSIF) on Tuesday handed over 55 waste-disposal skips valued at more than $10 million to the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA).
The donation was part of a three-phase solid-waste management project being undertaken by JSIF under its Inner City Basic Services Project (ICBSP). The ICBSP is funded by the World Bank.
The aim of the project is to improve the aesthetics of 12 inner-city communities and to change residents' behaviour where garbage disposal and collection are concerned.
JSIF has partnered with the NSWMA to implement the project in the following beneficiary communities: Federal Gardens, Jones Town, Africa/March Pen, Whitfield Town, Pasmore Town, Shelter Rock, Central Village, Knollis, Lauriston, Tawes Meadows, Flankers and Bucknor.
The handover ceremony took place at the Federal Gardens Community Centre and was attended by Information Minister Sandrea Falconer who gave the keynote address and formally handed over the skips. Falconer is chairperson of the newly appointed interministerial 'Keep Jamaica Clean' committee.
The other subcomponents of JSIF's solid-waste management project include:
The handing over of concrete enclosures to secure the skips and improve the communities' aesthetics (valued at approximately $28 million);
The roll-out of a social marketing campaign to educate residents on proper waste-disposal practices;
The training and certification of 56 environmental wardens who will promote the message of environmental awareness within the communities, and who will be empowered, by law, to enforce regulations under the NSWMA Act.
JSIF, in collaboration with the NSWMA, will also be launching an environmental management project called the COMCLEAN Initiative.
COMCLEAN will involve the communities in a host of innovative recycling activities such as the composting of biodegradable waste material. Another initiative will involve the planting of cash crops and the raising of livestock on unused lands within the communities.