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Waste Not, Want Not

Cooperation Among Community Members at Nusa Dua in South Bali Creates Successful Waste Recycling Project

Bali News: Bali, Indonesia, ROLE Foundation, Liza Dawn, Mike OíLeary, Bali WISE, Rotary Club Nusa Dua Bali, Karl Schmelzer, recycling, Banjar Ngis, Karangasem, compost, permaculture, training for Balinese women
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A successful household organic waste recycling program underway in Nusa Dua, South Bali, is set to soon expand to other parts of the Island.

On February 14, 2013, a graduation ceremony was held for a group of environmental ambassadors. On that date, a truck and shredder organized through Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua was handed over to the local community and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed with the Ngis Community (Banjar Ngis) of Karangasem, East Bali.

One year ago, the Rivers Ocean Land Ecology Foundation (ROLE) of South Bali pioneered the “Waste to Wonder Project” to teach waste-management skills to the Sawangan community that surrounds ROLE’s Sustainability Center at Nusa Dua.

Villagers were taught how to sort organic from non-organic rubbish, composting the organic materials to become rich natural fertilizers for use in the Foundation’s permaculture gardens.

The garden fed by this compost produce organic fruit and vegetables that are sold to local hotels and businesses. ROLE’s founder, Mike O’Leary, says the Waste-to-Wonder program is proof that communities in Bali can turn the problem of rubbish into an opportunity. 

“Last year Rotary Club Bali Nusa Dua generously agreed to finance the program which enabled us to start collecting and processing organic waste in Sawangan banjar,” Michael said. 
 “As with any new program we had to iron out some teething problems, but now we have the program running successfully as a working model of sustainable waste management, ready to be adopted by other communities.”

Continuing, O’Leary said: “ROLE is now looking for investment in the 'Waste to Wonder' program. We have the knowledge from our working example in Sawangan, but now need the funds to get it going in other communities.”

Demand from other communities for the program’s proven expertise is growing as the reputation of the sustainable and profitable gardens spreads to other areas of Bali. Pak Gede from the Banjar Kaja Ngis asked for ROLE’s assistance in establishing a Waste to Wonder program in their community.

“We heard about the success of the 'Waste to Wonder program' in Sawangan, and we hope to replicate it here in our community too,” Pak Gede said.
“We need a better way to deal with our rubbish, and we like the way the ‘Waste to Wonder program’ delivers benefits both for the community and the environment. We hope to recycle our organic waste and reuse it to make compost to help us grow more vegetables.”

Karl Schmelzer, a member of Rotary Club Bali - Nusa Dua, the project represents a big success. “Living in Bali and seeing all this rubbish dumped everywhere makes me really upset. The example of Sawangan shows that it can work. The area around the banjar is a lot cleaner now. I hope a lot more communities all over the island will introduce a system like this to make Bali a cleaner place!”

The Role Foundation believes that poor health, and poverty and environmental degradation are inextricably linked. To address this problem, ROLE has set up education and training facilities for the local communities of Nusa Dua. This has generated income from sustainable, environmentally friendly businesses.

ROLE has continued to grow since its establishment in 2007. In 2012,

ROLE restructured their programs, concentrating programs on women’s education programs at Bali WISE located on Jalan Siligita while environmental education was headquartered at the Island Sustainability Education Centre in Sawangan.

[Role Foundation Website]

For more information on Role’s work in Bali contact Liza Dawn at [Email] or by telephoning++62-(0) 81936164636.

© Bali Discovery Tours. Articles may be quoted and reproduced if attributed to


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