Emergency aid on its own is not sufficient to provide people with perspectives and sustainable, reinforcing measures. While the crisis endures, the transition to more sustainable forms of aid, aimed at building livelihoods and resilience both at an individual and a systemic level, gain importance. This project therefore strengthens public service delivery in the waste management sector in the long-term, while integrating medium-term relief measures to support impoverished Syrian refugees and Jordanians in covering their basic needs.
To this aim, Caritas Switzerland and its local partner Caritas Jordan build on the achievements of previous projects and work with Jerash municipality to pursue the long-term goal of establishing a municipal solid waste management system in Jerash. The municipality is supported in taking its first sorting station into operation and in establishing a business plan to market the recyclables recovered at the facility. This will have the triple effect of increasing the municipality’s revenue by selling recovered materials, reducing the costs for waste transportation, and limiting environmental hazards.
At the same time, waste collection and sorting is a labour provides income-generating opportunities for low-skilled workers who find it hard to get into the labour market. Thus, 105 cash workers are hired on short-term contracts in the context of this project to deliver 470 man-months of work. As part of this cash-for-work scheme, they are trained in waste collection or sorting, as well as labour laws and protection from health hazards. As the workers’ income will also benefit their families, an estimated 525 persons will receive support through the project and are expected to reduce their use of detrimental strategies to deal with the effects of poverty. Such negative coping strategies include sending children to work instead of school, falling deeper into debt, or reducing the number of meals eaten per day. The previous project showed that the supported households reduced their use of negative coping strategies by at least 20% on average.
Caritas also implements awareness raising campaigns to promote sorting and recycling in the community. These campaigns set the stage for more efficient and effective recovery of valuable materials and support a systemic change in waste treatment by distributing information material and sorting containers.
In parallel, Caritas continues to liaise with key local, national and international stakeholders. This will ensure that the local action is in line with developments in the national approach to waste management in link with nation-wide initiatives to formalize and professionalise public service delivery in cooperation with the private sector.