By; RAYMOND TEDUNJAYE, Lagos
Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) has established an academy to provide quality education, proper engagement and adequate sensitisation in helping people to make informed and strategic decisions about waste management in the State.
The LAWMA Academy, which is first of its kind by any waste management authority in Nigeria would provide knowledge hub for credible hands on tutelage and certification in solid waste management.
LAWMA Academy is an educational arm of LAWMA that engages innovative approach to support corporate and personal development and drive social responsibility among citizens. The Academy renders several programmes and services with the goal to improve waste literacy and promote good waste management practices to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.
The Academy, which was established to raise next generations of scholars and entrepreneurs in waste management, is charged with the responsibility of implementing first-class educational programme in waste management aimed at changing the social order, promote care and respect for the environment and open up business opportunities for people in the waste management sector.
It would also develop a platform for collaborative partnership in waste management geared towards knowledge acquisition and career and business development for individual, organisations and institutions whilst promoting adoption and implementation of sustainable waste management practices to general public.
It would also provide structured trainings and workshops on waste management for all stakeholders which include; public and private entities and individuals involved in generation, collection, transportation, utilisation, recycling and disposal of waste in Lagos State and beyond with trainings and courses that promote standard ethics, integrity and compliances to waste management and environmental regulations.
LAWMA is an agency of Lagos State Government statutorily charged with management of solid waste in the state and it remains the pace setter for waste management in Nigeria. LAWMA since its inception has adopted several programmes and strategies to manage waste in Lagos State, most of which did not suffice to bring about the desired change.
Lagos State based on its special status as the economic hub of Nigeria, rapid population growth, urbanization and industrialization, has a direct impact on the volume of waste being generated on daily basis in the State, and the social disposition of the populace towards waste management is highly unsatisfactory and most corporate organisations and businesses still lack the basic information and technical know how on proper waste handling.
To address issues of waste management in Lagos State, LAWMA has been up to the task in ensuring that all the nooks and crannies of Lagos are clean and safe to prevent communicable diseases and ensures no stone is left unturned in managing waste in the Centre of Excellence.
Having come to the realization that provision of quality education, proper engagement and adequate sensitisation on waste management practices are required to promote acceptability and conformity to laws and regulations in its sector, LAWMA was propelled to come up with the LAWMA Academy in a time like this.
LAWMA through the Academy will partner and work collaboratively with other sectors of the economy to promote the concept of a sustainable environment and achieve objectives of the Academy, which is to raise the next generation of Solid Waste Management scholars and entrepreneurs; connect the government, academia and institutions for a workable reform in the waste sector; create a hub for people to network, share ideas and espouse practices that will increase awareness and knowledge in waste management and train participants in skills and knowledge required to be competitive in the waste global economy. It will also groom responsible citizens that are capable of changing the social order in waste management and provide children with a variety of individualized and creative summer learning experience in waste management.
LAWMA Academy is in partnership with some academic institutions, research institutes, professional bodies in the environmental sector and identified stakeholders in other sectors including private, government and NGOs for a workable implementation the various programs and activities.
It will also promote the adoption of waste management into school curriculums from primary to tertiary level and work closely with higher institutions of learning to facilitate certification trainings in waste management and inclusion of waste management as one of the courses for Bachelor, Masters and P.hD degrees.
The Academy will also provide an experience forum for participants to gain practical skills and unique opportunities to learn, exchange existing practices, discuss challenges and develop a better informed decision-making process in waste management.
The Academy is offering key services, which are Internship programme, Organisational Training, Specialty Training in Waste Management, Summer School for students, Waste Summit and Waste Competition. All the services are geared toward promoting standard ethics, integrity and compliances to waste management and Environmentally regulations by individuals, corporations, professionals, and businesses in Lagos State.
The Internship Programme is an intensive training platform that will engage individuals on sustainable waste practices and also improve their employability skills. This programme will enroll applicants between age of 18 and 28 for internship experience with LAWMA through different learning processes and the interns will have the opportunity to be trained on execution of waste management tasks as well as data gathering and research.
The organisational trainings is certiﬁcation training for professionals, business owners, other waste management agencies and waste handlers in corporate environment and industries. The training will introduce corporate organisations and others to the fundamentals of public and corporate waste handling focusing on best practices to reduce, reuse, recycle and manage the resultant waste.
The Specialised Training will be designed for interested applicants in special area of interest in waste management and trainings on special area of interest like waste fleet management, waste business, waste to wealth and forensic waste analysis, among others will be offered based on individual interests.
The Summer School is for students in primary and secondary schools. At the summer school, students would be exposed to the concept of waste management through some students Educational programmes in waste management at LAWMA’s facilities for about two to four weeks.
For the LAWMA Waste Challenge Competition, the Academy would organise periodic quiz and essay competitions on waste management and schools and individuals would apply to participate online, and prizes and awards will be presented to winners.
The Annual Waste Management Summit would focus on addressing contemporary waste management and environmental issues. During the summit, professionals, academia, policy makers and other stakeholders are would apply to participate.
Certificate on completion of waste management training with LAWMA will be issued to trainees at the end of the programme and it will be displayed in offices and corporations. It is expected that after completion of services offered by the LAWMA Academy, the trainees would be well informed and trained to adopt good waste management practices, develop a Solid Waste Management plan for their facilities and support government’s eﬀorts to increase awareness on a cleaner environment, instill behavioral change and prevent indiscriminate waste disposal. The participants would also be exposed to business opportunities embedded in the waste management sector, enhance understanding of standards tools for waste minimization via reduce, reuse and recycle concept.
The Project Partners and sponsors of the LAWMA Academy would comprise private business owners, corporate entities, government Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs). It would also include academia, institutions, waste management and recycling companies, environmental friendly organisations, NGOs and other executives who share common value and passion for empowering the younger generations and promoting a cleaner and better environment.