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Upcycling in Sierra Leone

New jobs due to upcycling project in Sierra Leone

Collecting waste, creating new products and income

Bo City once drowned in rubbish. The city in Sierra Leone with about 240,000 inhabitants was struggling to handle the effects of urbanisation. At the roadsides were growing mountains of plastic bags, cans and rests of food. Uncontrolled landfills was seen everywhere in the city. The people were lost with their waste.

Today, Bo is named the cleanest city in Sierra Leone. In cooperation with the city administration Welthungerhilfe fights against the garbage: In the context of the initiative "Klin Bo Services" 60 teenagers will be qualified as "garbage collectors". The trainees will experience how waste has to be sorted out and where it must be collected.

With a scooter in the city's remote areas

The adolescents are equipped with motorised three-wheelers. With their scooters the teenagers start their tour – along the main road right up to remote corners, which can not be reached by the garbage service. The garbage collectors come to everyone who gets in touch with the initiative: Once signed up, people can have their waste removed for a small charge.

The waste is disposed at special collecting points. It is a win-win situation: The people get rid of their waste and the adolescents working for "Klin Bo Services" earn their own money and escape the wide-spread unemployment.

Creative re-using

Not all of the waste reaches the disposal sites. Everything usable comes into a further process. Workshops, which are supported by Welthungerhilfe, create new products out of old things: Handbags made with plastic bags, aluminium cans become clothes-hangers and organic waste ends up as compost.

Using old things to create something new - a success model for many people in Bo.

Young people sorting out garbage.
Young people sorting out the garbage they have collected.
A young man at work.
Young people earn money with recycling old aluminium cans into cooking pots.
Two pairs of sandals made of old car tyres.
Sandals made of old car tyres.

The aid measures are financially supported by the Department for International Development (UK).