The Dow initiative, Project Butterfly, is raising innovative solutions to fight Africa’s plastic waste challenge. The initiative unites residents, non-governmental organisations, government agencies, educators, community leaders, and manufacturers in unique partnerships to combat the waste crisis. By forging these crucial collaborations, the initiative helps bridge the gap between recycling buy-back centres, sorting facilitators, collectors, and recyclers. Often, it provides the first opportunity for residents to harvest waste and use it to generate wealth by collecting, sorting, and selling it to recycling organisations.
Through the initiative, there are river clean-up events, and recycling education sessions to help residents understand the impact of uncontrolled waste, spotlight ways to reverse the trend and build enthusiasm for a cleaner future.
In Nairobi, Kenya, the programme funds and facilitates waste clean-up activities, education campaigns, and new ways to incentivise recycling. The project which was likened to how a caterpillar transforms into a butterfly is reshaping mindsets, communities, and plastic waste in areas plagued by pollution and poverty. Dow’s resources and technical assistance have helped waste-preneur organisations like Mr Green Africa (MGA) and child development NGO, ChildFund, to catalyse change. MGA now sees Nairobi and other emerging markets as a new frontier for positive waste management change, as communities embrace the idea that plastic is too valuable to lose, family livelihoods, security, and health improve and polluted environments are transformed.
Dow’s Project Butterfly has made everyone from local school children and trash collectors to government officials and international development groups to collaborate, innovate, and accelerate solutions for the first time on the need for a cleaner society.
Source: National Geographic
Photo source: _Dermatz