Inauguration of the Non-Organic Waste Facility in Sarafand within the Lebanon Host Communities Support Programme
- “This project is glance of hope towards Sarafand. The establishment of this plant could be a solution to the waste crisis in the area and to protect the most important occupation of the people there, namely fishing,” stated Abou Zeid and he hoped that “the international community will continue to support the host communities
On March 30, 2017 the inauguration of the Non-Organic Waste Facility in Sarafand was held in the presence of the UK Ambassador in Lebanon Hugo Shorter, UNDP Country Director Mr. Luca Renda, Advisor to the Minister of Social Affairs (MoSA) Mr. Mario Abou Zeid, representatives from the UK embassy, Mayor of Sarafand Mr. Ali Haidar, members of the municipal council, stakeholders and beneficiaries from the area. The project was implemented within the Lebanon Host Communities Support Programme (LHSP).
Funded by the UK, the project provided equipment to support the center and held an awareness campaign on the importance and benefits of sorting from the source in order to reduce critical health and environmental risks resulting from random incineration. The project also held similar campaigns in surrounding villages. Villages like Addosiyeh and Kfarjarra have already started sorting from source and are benefiting from the facility which is being operated by 13 workers.
Mayor of Sarafand welcomed the attendees and thanked the UK, MoSA and UNDP for their support.
‘‘As the Lebanese proverb goes ‘a small stone supports a jar’ I am optimistic and realistic. Much more needs to be done. But I believe that local communities and municipalities with their resilience and with our support and that of the international community, make a success out of the current crisis,” said H.E Mr. Hugo Shorter. “It makes me proud to see how the UK is supporting Sarafand on the ground with actions not words. Our support shows that the UK continues to be outward facing and committed to our global partnerships,’’ he added.
"Today I am glad that we are gathered here to inaugurate a new important project, the Non-Organic Waste Sorting Facility, which aims to reduce the health and environmental risks resulting from burning waste," said Mr. Luca Renda. "It is a shared responsibility to protect the environment, and the health of the people here," he added.
“This project is glance of hope towards Sarafand. The establishment of this plant could be a solution to the waste crisis in the area and to protect the most important occupation of the people there, namely fishing,” stated Abou Zeid and he hoped that “the international community will continue to support the host communities.”
Shorter and Lazzarini toured the facility with the mayor towards the end of the visit.
“I am so happy that this project was implemented, since now I know that sorting my home garbage is not going to waste like what used to happen. The project gave me a different view to reducing the production of wastes, for instance using one nylon bag to carry my groceries instead of many bags, and even try to make use of it at home for other things. Adding to that, wherever I go, I take a glass water bottle with me, in order to reduce the use of plastic, this way one will reduce waste production. By doing things like that, zero waste production can be reached,” said 49 year old Zeinab Asayli. She went on to state “I also taught my kids, from when they were younger to be clean, in a sense that they shouldn’t throw garbage outside the cars, just keep them in the car.”
Another woman from Sarafand, 53 year old Mariam Younes stated “I found this project to be very helpful not only for us, but also for our kids and the future generations. It is a healthy project which will reduce the side effects in the process of getting rid of garbage. We learned more from this project about dealing with garbage than ever before, in the best way possible, which is limiting the great use of materials that are most harmful to the environment.” Younes then added “we noticed that even paper can also be sorted aside to be sent to the sorting center alone. Before this project, all the Sarafand garbage was burnt. In the summer we weren’t able to sit on our porches due to the horrible smell in the area, however, hopefully now that problem will decrease.
The Lebanon Host Communities Support Programme has so far implemented more than 372 projects covering different sectors and benefiting more than 1.1 million Lebanese and Syrians thanks to support from international donors.