Women Environment Preservation Committee - (WEPCO)
The Women Environment Preservation Comittee (WEPCO) is a non-profit organization established in 1992 by a group of housewives from Lalitpur in response to a growing awareness that the environment in the Kathmandu Valley in Nepal was in danger.
The growing volume of waste caused by increasing population and excessive consumption is one of the most urgent problems in the City of Kathmandu. As a result, WEPCO has made 'disorganized garbage' its priority.
WEPCO's goal is to enable the people of Kathmandu to have a clean and healthy environment through the initiatives of local women and students. The bulk of waste generated by households is kitchen waste. In Nepal most kitchen work is done by women. Women decide what, when and where to throw garbage.
WEPCO has completed more than 100 training sessions on environmental awareness among community women and schools. It has several women's environment groups working in Lalitpur Sub-Metropolitan City. WEPCO has formed 90 clubs in schools, involving more than 6,000 students in six districts. Students of eco-clubs help create awareness of household waste management in their communities.
WEPCO, which collects and manages garbage from more than 3,000 households from Lalitpur, has proved that using the three "R" principle (reduce, reuse and recycle) at the community level can control waste pollution problems in an urban municipality. WEPCO established demonstration sites for paper recycling and organic and vermin compost and has supported many households to start their own composting.
WEPCO has a staff of 15 women and 10 men who are supported through the sale of recycled paper and garbage collection services. WEPCO is involved at the policy level to promote advocacy against the burning of waste, and teh expansion of waste management at the community level.