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Teaching the “Three Rs” of Trash Management

A girl proudly displays her handmade earrings.

A girl proudly displays her handmade earrings.

At our People for a Healthy Gulf project site in Darién, Panama, communities are putting in practice the three R’s of Waste Management: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle. Working with local volunteers, EcoLogic has held workshops in the five communities, giving practical training in composting organic material, managing solid waste and trash, dealing with sewage and providing good sanitation. These workshops are one step in putting into practice effective waste management solutions that include other activities such as the construction of composting latrines, and the creation of an organized, community-based Waste Commission.

For the workshops, community participation has been high, and children are especially enthusiastic. Because of their interest, EcoLogic’s country officer, Yaira Allois, helped to create a workshop focused on making crafts from otherwise discarded materials. Young people are letting their imagines run wild and they are repurposing soda cans, bottles, and other trash into jewelry, ornaments, and standalone pieces of art.

By offering communities a variety of workshops and trainings, EcoLogic empowers local people to establish ways to reduce their impact on the ecosystem around them. And whether that’s compacting unrecyclable waste in a lined pit, composting biodegradable waste, or making artful earrings from trash it’s something that improves the lives of all living creatures, ourselves included.