By: Aminath Ali
“Switch” is launched under the initiative to stop the use of single use plastics in Addu city. The program was launched during a special ceremony held at The Maldives National University, Hithadhoo Campus on Saturday, by Minister of Youth, Sports and Community Empowerment, Ahmed Mahloof.
“Switch” Program is an initiative by Southern Community Empowerment Association of Maldives (SCEAM) in association with Addu city council to promote the use of “My bag”. Slogan used for the promotion of the program.
This initiation by SCEAM is to support the resolution passed by Addu city council to ban the use of single-use plastic in the city from 5th June 2020 onwards. SCEAM aims to start similar campaign in the 4 atolls of the Southern region.
“Switch” program will be carried out in three phases. During the first phase training program will be carried out for those who will be working in this program to manufacture the bags. The main purpose of this to build teamwork and maintain quality and standard in the work done under this program.
During the second phase, the trained team will be manufacturing the bags and will be supplied to local retailers. SCEAM aims to collaborate with retailers to reduce and ban the use of plastic bags in their stores.
In the third phase, SCEAM aims to collaborate with other institutions to support for community programs to educate and raise awareness. Along with this use of my bag will be launched in all four atolls of the Southern region.
Speaking at the event, Minister Mahloof appealed to start similar campaigns in other regions of Maldives by taking Addu city as an exemplary city. He further highlighted that full support will be provided by the Ministry to the program.
During the ceremony, a sample bag was presented to Minister Mahloof. This bag was presented by Addu city mayor, Abdulla Sodhiq.
Addressing at the event, Mayor congratulated SCEAM team for taking the initiative with the resolution passed to ban single-use plastic in Addu city. He also said that he hopes to see other NGOs working alongside in reducing the use of single-use plastic in the city.
SCEAM is a newly registered NGO to engage and empower community in the four atolls of the Southern region of Maldives.