Once we started working in Ezbet Khairalla, the residents made it clear that the most important issue was dealing with waste, whether solid waste or liquid waste ( sewage)
The accumulation of solid waste in Ezbet Khairalla was growing in catastrophic proportions, leading to the spread of diseases and the proliferation of scorpions and snakes among the inhabitants. To tackle the problem of waste removal, our preliminary step was to gather basic information about Ezbet Khairalla such as the number of streets, houses and businesses in the area. This was a huge undertaking, since there are no official records for unplanned communities. With the assistance of the Ministry of Environment and the youth of the local NGOs, we were able to compile the required data, and thus develop a plan for solid waste removal.
The first major breakthrough came with the signing of a protocol between the Cairo Governorate, the Ministry of Environment and Peace & Plenty, which was signed on March 31, 2008. The Ministry of Environment together with the Cleaning and Beautification Authority would provide waste removal trucks and the personnel to man them, while Peace & Plenty would follow up on implementation with the help of the local NGOs.
Peace & Plenty also designed and manufactured solid waste receptacles which are theft proof and tamper proof, and these now cover 30% of Ezbet Khairalla in an initial phase of implementation. The success of this pilot project has resulted in orders for the receptacles for dissipation in other governorates.
Since Ezbet Khairalla is an unplanned community, there was no provision for a sewage system. A system of septic tanks, erratically constructed, resulted in overflows and seepage, contamination of drinking water and obvious health hazards. With some advocacy and a receptive Cairo Governorate, funds were allocated in the fiscal budget for a major waste pipeline covering Ezbet Khairalla. Implementation has started and completion should be within three years. The residents of the community feel that they are one step closer to achieving one of their dreams.
2010 Progess Report
Based on the protocol signed between the Cairo Governorate, The Ministry of Environment, and Peace and Plenty in 2008, 7 garbage collecting trucks were allocated solely for use in Ezbet Khairalla, under the direction of Peace and Plenty.
32 employees and 7 drivers have been provided by the Cairo Cleaning and Beautification Authority to provide solid waste disposal to Ezbet Kairalla, under the supervision of Peace and Plenty.
The main entrance to the Ezba is now transformed , with plans to cover the rest of the Ezba steadily being implemented.
To us, the members of Peace & Plenty, this project symbolizes what we strive for, namely total cooperation between the residents of the community, the government and the local NGOs, as well as full integration within the community itself between the Muslim and the Coptic residents who share the same goals of living in a clean and healthy environment.
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