By: Rachel Cargle, Social Media Manager BUPeriod
Have you ever heard of the term menstrual waste? It’s not something I had heard of either but after reading an article posted by the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaboration and Council I realized it’s something worth learning about.
The Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development in Senegal hosted a technical workshop tackling issue of menstrual waste management at both household and health facility levels,
The lack of adequate sanitation and waste systems, alongside the increasing use of disposable sanitary products, presents a considerable challenge for sustainable waste management across Africa. And that concern is what brought this workshop about.
The article reported that around 50 experts from a range of ministries and disciplines attended the meeting, alongside staff from the WSSCC/UN Women Joint Programme, which is working with governments to improve sanitation and hygiene outcomes for women in Cameroon, Niger and Senegal.
It seems that the big challenge is weak enforcement of waste management laws and sanctions in West and Central Africa. Waste disposal facilities in places frequented by women and girls, such as schools, transport hubs and markets are extremely limited.
In response, Senegal’s National Waste Management Programme has adopted an inclusive approach by devolving waste management to the local government.
The programme has introduced awareness-raising initiatives such as National Recycling Day and an alert system in the region of Dakar to monitor waste management at the community level. Schemes for community-wide collection and recycling of waste have been successfully piloted in several towns and cities in Senegal.
Some examples of waste management initiatives in Kenya include:
- a colour coding system for hospital waste and classification of bins for waste segregation
- new technologies for waste incineration and eco-friendly waste disposal
- the generation of biogas from human and animal waste to produce electricity
The WSSCC also reported that composting different types of waste in India was highlighted, with five different technological options promoted including the process of vermicomposting, using various species of worms.
To learn more you can visit the Water Supply and Sanitation Collaboration and Council at www.wsscc.og