Speech by UNDP Liberia Resident Representative Stephen Rodriques on the Launch of Cash for Work on waste management

August 6, 2022
UNDP Liberia Resident Representative Cash for Work

UNDP Liberia Resident Representative Stephen Rodriques (right) at the launch of the Cash for Work

UNDP Liberia

I like to congratulate all those who have volunteered to participate in this cash for work exercise in an effort to serve as stewards for the management of waste in their communities

It is indeed a pleasure, along with the Administration of the City of Monrovia, to be a part of this initiative under the theme “Promoting Community’s Stewardship for Waste Management in Monrovia

Liberia has such an amazing natural environment, but waste and pollution is clearly a growing problem, not just for the communities but the waterways and quality of life in the cities.

The Government of Liberia and the City of Monrovia can bring about all the good laws and city ordinances to keep Monrovia and Liberia clean. However, it is ultimately up to the people of this country to accept personal responsibility to keep their environment clean and beautiful; and I strongly believe that change can be led by you, the youth assembled here today.

Solid waste, including plastics is a major challenge in many communities across Monrovia, where overflowing trash puts residents at greater risk of diseases and exacerbates the challenges of earning a livelihood.

The launch of this community-led clean- up campaign to deal with the situation of waste in Monrovia starts with each one of us. I also urge everyone to continue to work within their own communities to encourage friends, neighbors, and families to understand the role the whole community can play in protecting the environment. Not just today, but every day.

Therefore, this is the time that we must resolve collectively to stand together to work in partnership or collaboration to promote, support and celebrate volunteering as a way of solving our common problems.

Volunteering is a fundamental building block of civil society and the value of being a responsible citizen.

I want to particularly thank the community leaders and encourage them to step up to ensure that they encourage and promote self-help initiative and that the role for volunteers is realized and their impact is maximized in making communities safe and healthy for youth, women and children.

We are trusting in the commitment of the community leaders and the corps of volunteers involved in this program to work with the MCC and other stakeholders in sustaining this program.

I am happy for the presence of private recycling institutions at this event. Their commitment and partnership with the communities to purchase plastic waste collected from the communities can go a long way in sustaining this program.

Recycling and composting produced from the waste collected, can ensure that plastic is being repurposed to create income. “By doing this we are assisting to prevent global warming and contributing to a clean and safe environment.

UNDP is committed to protecting the environment both in Liberia and internationally. That is why UNDP is collaborating with the Monrovia City Corporation to support this campaign and we are proud to be here today. I’d like to congratulate all of you young men and women as well as the community leadership who have volunteered today to get your hands dirty in order to make a difference and take responsibility to keep your communities clean and beautiful.

UNDP is proud to present to you cleaning tools to kick-start this campaign and we look forward to presenting to each one of you US100.00 at the end of the 20 days launch of this campaign to create opportunity for you to start-up small businesses that can support your livelihood.

I want to use this opportunity to call on all stakeholders, including development partners and the Government of Liberia to support community and youth driven initiative to help clean up the City of Monrovia and other parts of the Country.

UNDP looks forward to working together with the Monrovia City Corporation and other stakeholders to support this great cause as part of our commitment to the national and global agenda on sustainable development.

I take this opportunity to reaffirm UNDP support to youth empowerment in Liberia, and to reassure you that we are fully committed to encourage solutions-driven partnerships for achieving the sustainable development goals.

I thank you!