Thailand is making large-scale systematic changes around waste management: Thailand’s Natural Resources and Environment Ministry has created a 2018-2030 road map for waste management which includes eliminating 4 types of single-use plastic by 2022 and using 100% recycled plastic by 2027.
However, each community is in a different places when it comes to waste management. Some communities have Waste Banks where you can exchange your recyclables for cash, some have a sanitary land-fill and curbside pick-up, some don’t have resources for pick-up, some burn all forms of waste. Ask lots of questions, find out what systems your community has in place. Meet your community where they are at and contribute to their waste management goals.
- Teach Your Students about Waste Management and the Three R’s: This webpage contains 2 lessons about recycling and waste management that can guide your teaching. Some may need to be modified depending on the status of waste management at your site.
- Create Waste Management Systems: Build/join a Waste Management team of interested counterparts at your site. Be sure to include someone from the Public Health Department at your SAO or Tessaban - they will have access to national funding for Waste Management projects. There are factories that recycle waste in Bangkok, and centers that collect recyclable material and ship it to Bangkok - get your community connected to these systems.
- Improve Waste Management Systems: Work with a Waste Management team to identify weak links in the system - parts of the community that are underserved, confusing marketing messages, inconvenient placement of waste bins - and problem-solve solutions. Be sure that a member of the Public Health Department is on your team - they will have access to national funding for Waste Management projects.
- Increase Waste Management System Awareness: With guidance from a Waste Management Team, increase community awareness about the systems in place. This is a great opportunity to utilize youth as resources and engage them in service learning. Plan a camp allowing older students to teach camp attendees how to separate waste, at a sports competition feature waste separation where students guide attendees to properly separate their waste, host a found objects (waste) art competition...