Assessment on Vulnerable Youths Integration to Dar es Salaam Solid Waste Management for Improvement: Kinondoni Municipality Case
The present study assessed the possibility of integrating vulnerable youths to complement government and community based efforts in improving the existing municipal solid waste management crisis facing Dar es Salaam City using a case study of Kinondoni Municipality. The study was motivated by the fact that, many literature and mass media have extensively commented on uncollected decomposing heaps of solid waste rendering Dar es Salaam City to be ranked the 12th dirtiest city in Africa. This reported crisis of unmanged solid waste in Dar es slaam city, prompted the present study to conduct a problem-solving oriented research by looking at “solid waste collection” as one of the employment opportunities that could liberate the unprecedented growing numbers of unemployed youths frequently found on “vijiwe” (A Kiswahili word meaning “jobless corners”) sitting idle or contemplating to commit crimes for survival. To this direction, it was necessary to start by conducting a baseline survey in order to bench mark the magnitude of solid waste collection and challenges in the study area. Then the study assessed the potentiality of involving neighbourhood-based waste management groups and other partners with a view of seeking the possibility of integrating youths into community-based initiatives (CBI), community based organizations (CBOs) and self-employing individuals. Furthermore, where such community groups exist - but failed to attract youths to join in, the study used in-depth study to unearth the underlying causes so that they could be uprooted to facilitate an enabling environment of turning rampant solid waste collection a commercial and potential employer of vulnerable groups of youths in community areas. Research methodology involved the use of quantitative method to collect information from 6 youth camps randomly selected in informal settlements which required labour for effective collection of MSW. Thus, questionnaires and in-depth study were interchangeably employed to probe different stakeholder institutions involved in decentralized MSWM system on general performance in solid waste collection. They included CBOs, individuals and small scale private agents. Qualitative method based on in-depth study was equally employed in order to extract views of respondents from focused group discussions (FGDs). It was intended to obtain respondents particularly youth’s awareness, readiness and challenges in undertaking solid waste collection employment. Finally, the study drew conclusions and recommendations on the way forward to reducing Dar es Salaam city solid waste management crisis while sustaining employment to disadvantaged groups of youths.
Key words: Solid waste, Community based Organizations (CBOs), Employment, waste collection.