Why waste matters

Without proper rubbish collection and disposal services, people living in poverty are at risk.

  • They’re likely to become sick as open burning of waste produces smoke and toxic fumes.
  • Discarded waste creates an ideal breeding ground for mosquitoes and vermin, spreading diseases such as malaria and typhoid.
  • Repeated bouts of sickness and disease mean families become trapped in poverty. Some resort to bonded labour to get the money they need.
  • Natural hazards such as flooding – which already hit the poorest people hardest – are made worse by drains and waterways being clogged with waste.

A triple win

Protecting health

Waste management projects create rubbish collection services for people living in poor communities – leading to improved health.

Protecting the planet

Rubbish collection and disposal services help protect the environment, especially the oceans, from plastic pollution. Our partners are also pushing for waste reduction in the economy and society.

Providing work

Recycling businesses, set up as social enterprises, create jobs that provide properly paid work – and dignity – for vulnerable people.

We’re in this together

Partner projects in overseas impoverished communities are an important aspect of our environmental sustainability programme. But they’re not the whole story.

It’s critical that each of us in the UK plays our part in reducing the amount of waste we produce. Please think about how you can put less waste in your bin.

Find out more

We are contributing to the Sustainable Development Goals being met:

SDG 3 (‘Good health and wellbeing’) by: preventing respiratory diseases, diarrhoea and infections

SDG 11 (‘Sustainable cities and communities’) by: contributing to sustainable urbanisation

SDG 12 (‘Responsible consumption and production’) by: recycling waste and reducing release of pollutants into water and air. 

SDG 14 (‘Life below water’) by: reducing the volume of plastics reaching oceans. 

Twin today

In low-income countries, more than 90% of waste is not properly managed

Meg Brockway

Twin your bin today!

Twinning our bin has opened up great conversations with our kids about what happens with waste in other countries. They love to run to the window and watch the bin men collect our recycling and waste and they are puzzled to hear that many families don't have that kind of help.

Twin your bin today!