By Davis Otieno
The Jumuia ya Mukuru project was started in the Early 90’s by Father Alex from Italy, who was by then the priest of St John in Korogocho. The main aim of the project was to recycle waste that was being dumped in Dandora dumpsite as well as to create job opportunities for the families living inside and around the dumpsite.
With the help of Father Alex and other interested parties like Chandaria , a recycling project was set up inside the dumpsite and a social hall was built for the community.
The recycling project and the social hall helped bring up a rescue center which was called Boma Rescue Centre (Dumpsite rescue center) It was a Rehabilitation Centre to the dumpsite communities and also a place where their kids could go to school. The center trained the youths on how to recycle and they began to plant trees as a way of helping to protect the environment.
I talked to one of the group members by the name Charles Oduor, who has been working at the dumpsite for 30 years. He told me that when Sir Alex went back to Italy, things began to fall apart. He tells me that the people Father Alex left the project in were not interested in helping. The recycling project stopped due to corruption and some machines were stolen and others spoiled.
“It is now 15 years down the line the project has stopped. The dumpsite is full and there is no recycling project in the dumpsite. Most of the machines are rooting because there is no maintenance and repair. Jumuia ya Mukuru Project Collapsed and most of the families lost their jobs” he said.