8 November, 2023: The “: Women in Circularity” initiative by Beiersdorf was launched in four countries across the globe. This initiative targets the collection and recycling of 15,000 tons of plastic annually in emerging markets and offers jobs and training opportunities support to 1,600 women.
Through this holistic activity, Beiersdorf is strengthening its CARE BEYOND SKIN Sustainability Agenda. The company seeks to provide substantial funding to plastic waste recycling organizations that display a strong social business approach. The two important objectives are – firstly, to initiate in emerging economies, the expansion of the recycling infrastructure of plastic waste management organisations and secondly to ensure that the waste collectors, primarily women, who constitute a majority, receive the requisite training and development opportunities. “Women in Circularity” is all set to make a significant environmental impact and facilitate a more inclusive society.
Organizations that have been the most negatively affected by COVID-19 were selected during the launch of the initiative. A comprehensive validation process and on-site visits, were conducted, after which four organizations were selected. These four organizations were: Green Worms in India, Delterra in Argentina, In Ghana, Recycle Up! Ghana and in Kenya, TakaTaka Solutions.
The “Women in Circularity “entails a donation of 4 million Euros and forms a part of Beiersdorf’s COVID-19 Aid Program. This program was launched in 2020 and is the largest global aid program in the history of Beiersdorf. The company aims to work closely with the public authorities and the local and international organizations and through this cooperation assist in mitigating the negative impacts and effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. It also aims to offer income and development opportunities to over 1,600 women in the waste management sector.
“Women in Circularity “has the objective of dealing with the dual challenge of plastic pollution and poverty. According to the World Bank Report 2021, only 3% of household plastic waste is collected and recycled in Kerala. Employment opportunities will be generated for the local workforce. A local waste management association in Kerala, Green Worms, will establish a material recovery facility in Malappuram District by the year 2023. A plastic waste recycling plant in the Kannur District will be implemented by February 2024. Both of these are situated in rural Kerala. Jobs for over 500 women form 20 villages, and the recovery of 6,000 metric tons of plastic, from which 2,760 metric tons will be recycled annually is projected. “Women in Circularity’’apart from making a significant environmental impact will also elevate the social status of women in the region through training, regular health check-ups, vaccination drives and providing a safe work environment. A Waste Workers Welfare Find will also be established for the enhancement of the economic security of the local community.Top of Form
Vice President Corporate Sustainability at Beiersdorf, Jean-François Pascal stated that the global plastic problem has intensified due to the production and disposal of millions of tons of plastic annually, most of which is single use plastic. This initiative he added seeks to reduce the detrimental effect of the pandemic on the environment and society by creating a lasting impact.
Sustainability Manager Environmental Strategy & Human Rights, Luisa Robles Vega said that with the launch of this initiative the plastic waste collection and recycling capacity of organizations will be increased by 15,000 tons of plastic per year. This will be achieved by the expansion of their plastic waste management infrastructure and the inclusion of new recycling plants. The funds will contribute towards the creation of new jobs and towards the improvement of the living conditions of female waste collectors through training.
Jabir Karat, CEO – Green Worms, Jabir Karat, mentioned that during the pandemic most of the waste workers, mostly women had no source of income. They had taken loans and now after getting back to work they are repaying the loans. These resilient women need access to stable and safe work opportunities.
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