Composting: A healthier environment, healthier people

─ promoting converting organic waste to fertiliser for plants

─ M&CC rolls out composting programme in primary schools

DPI, Guyana, Thursday, May 9, 2019

Guyanese youth will be exposed to the process of separating waste and how it can help the environment. The Mayor and City Council (M&CC) is propelling this initiative via a Composting Programme which is currently being rolled out in primary schools. Five schools in Georgetown have thus far benefitted.

According to M&CC’s Waste Management Director, Walter Narine, the programme aims to influence behavioural changes among the students at the primary level. The students will learn how to do waste separation and in turn, educate their parents. “What we plan to accomplish is every school should learn how to do waste separation because we would provide the receptacle, and we will take one component of the waste, which is the organic waste, and to teach them how to do organic fertilising. And to revitalise planting in schools,” Narine explained.

Sharing her view on how this will benefit her students, Headteacher of the Tucville Primary School, Collen McTeir said: “The composting programme will help my students to understand what composting is and how to use it to make manure for plants as opposed to putting it in the landfill.”

Taking the bold step of reinstituting gardens in the school system is an idea that is currently being examined at the level of Tucville’s Parent Teacher body. It was explained that due to flooding in the school compound when it rains, the planting of the school garden has been stalled until further notice.

To begin composting, water air, organic material (vegetable scrapings, fruit and fruit peels and food) brown material (dry grass, leaves) soil is required. Composting materials must be kept in a covered container or pit to ensure it does not attract rodents or other pests. It is recommended that it is stirred at least once a day.

The M&CC, in collaboration with the Ministry of Communities (MOC), will visit over 27 primary schools in Georgetown over the next three weeks. The demonstration of how to mix items for creating fertilisers for plants will be done at least one day after the organic waste bin is filled, so as to give students a first-hand look into how to create organic fertiliser.

The initiative aims to help reduce the Methane gas that is produced from organic waste to reduce greenhouse gases.

Kipenie Jordan.

Images: Jules Gibson.