There’s a global waste crisis caused by irresponsible consumption and negligent waste disposal. It’s a crisis in Sri Lanka too; our waste authorities are dealing with far more than they can process, or even collect.
WASTE ACTION LK (WALK) was formed with the specific objective of bringing stakeholders in waste management together, to collaborate and address obvious gaps in national waste management. This ‘gap’ is sometimes referred to as the ‘blame game’, where manufacturers blame consumer demand, while consumers are either unaware at mass market level and/or find it difficult and expensive to be waste-conscious. Therefore, other than a small group of conscious ‘woke’ consumers who attempt to reduce their waste footprint, there is very little action or change at the SOURCE, in relation to waste. Increasingly, however, there have been activist groups and SMEs that have actively addressed waste – by organizing beach cleanups, recycle collections, composting services and more. This approach, while beneficial, still does not address consumption – and until we have a general public that is more waste-conscious, change in waste management practices will continue to stagger and start. This is where WALK comes in…
WALK is a not-for-profit initiative providing sustainable solutions that can positively impact waste management practices in Sri Lanka. The WALK network of development partners, state institutions, sustainable businesses, environmentalists and scientists work together to drive awareness and action. The overarching aim of the initiative is to collaborate with businesses working toward sustainable waste management and connect the WALK community with these change-makers, activist groups and citizens who care.
A joint venture partnership between Radhika Philip (of R. Parker Publishing (Pvt) Ltd) and Savera Weerasinghe (of waste management consultants Ananta Sustainables (Pvt) Ltd), the WALK platform offers curated services to corporates, small businesses and the consumer market. Working with a cross section of stakeholders, WALK collaborates and shares expertise on environmental sustainability. To-date, the WALK network has supported waste management initiatives on the ground by connecting and supporting members within its network.
In more exciting news, the WALK Initiative recently received project funding from the European Union (EU) to produce documentary videos on awareness about single-use plastics in Sri Lanka. WALK’s media unit has commenced filming this trilingual island-wide production, with the aim to create awareness and plan for change in consumer behavior by using media as an educator. WALK-EU short films will be available for syndication to national and international media, as the WALK initiative continues to follow a ‘Pay It Forward’ objective in all that it does.
This December, WALK officially launched its first service/product: WALK Home Waste Plan. This is a WALK network partnership that connects Ananta Sustainables, Bio Bins, Eco Friends and Earth Guardians Sri Lanka to provide fast, effective and economical solutions for household waste management.
The WALK Home Waste Plan makes it easier to reduce, recycle and return in 4 easy steps:
First, Ananta Sustainables registers the customer and processes the payment online. Second, Bio Bins provides a sustainable concrete compost bin, including delivery, installation and a tutorial on how to compost. Third, Eco Friends will collect your separated paper, plastic, glass and metal waste via a mobile app – WALK provides a free first three months subscription, and Rs.200 per month thereafter. Recyclable materials are collected at no further cost up to 4 times every month. And finally, Earth Guardians Sri Lanka’s Tree Project plants indigenous sapling trees for each WALK Home purchase. Paying It Forward in all that it does, WALK invests 15% of its sales revenue directly in tree planting so the customer has an immediate return on their investment, not just at home, but on a larger scale.
Invest in a WALK Home Waste Plan (priced at just Rs.14,000) and let’s usher in a cleaner tomorrow!