The Standard Group Plc is a multi-media organization with investments in media platforms spanning newspaper print operations, television, radio broadcasting, digital and online services. The Standard Group is recognized as a leading multi-media house in Kenya with a key influence in matters of national and international interest.
  • Standard Group Plc HQ Office,
  • The Standard Group Center,Mombasa Road.
  • P.O Box 30080-00100,Nairobi, Kenya.
  • Telephone number: 0203222111, 0719012111
  • Email: [email protected]

City youths collect garbage to push for clean environment

 Garbage collection initiative along the street in Lang'ata, Nairobi. [Ronald Kipruto, Standard]

On a Saturday morning, a team of youths randomly visit households to collect garbage across city estate.

Armed with polythene bags and without protective wear such as gloves, the youth also comb various streets to make the city clean.

The move is part of an initiative inspired last year when the team leader, Victor Mutuma Munyua, 25, witnessed a passenger throw out litter through car window.

When The Standard caught up with the youths during one of the cleaning sessions, Munyua, said that cleaning the environment is a calling triggered by the incident to bring change.

“After witnessing someone throw out litter while I was in that matatu, I knew I had to do something about it,” he said.

“The following day I went out alone with a trash bag and started collecting garbage in the estate.  At first, I felt uncomfortable but after that the second attempt I collected the trash and carried them back home to dispose,” he said.

Munyua said this was the start of a long journey of becoming an environmental safety ambassador through clean ups.

Munyua said that after collecting garbage for a while, he decided to go public with the initiative.

“I posted the first video online in October last year and it was well received and people started noticing the initiative,” he said.

And today, the initiative that started in November last year has now attracted more than 250 youths who show up to support the clean-up exercise.

In one of the Saturdays mornings, a team of about 80 youths gathered outside St Peters Mck Lang’ata to collect garbage. After a successful one the previous weekend outside Citam Valley Road, Nairobi

Munyua explained that they use a unique way to conserve the environment, through his lead now dabbed “The bro who Cleans initiative.”

“The bro who cleans is an initiative that is dedicated in transforming communities through community clean ups that takes place on Saturdays, where we volunteer and help participate clean a particular area,” said Munyua.

He said beyond estate clean ups, they have been to different parts of Nairobi.

“The initiative has so far had 18 clean ups since last October with the last clean up having 85 volunteers,” said Munyua.

Born and raised in Nyali, Mombasa County, Munyua is also keen to foster and teach environmental awareness and responsibility to kids.

 “We encourage community members to join us in our efforts to keep our environment safe, clean and healthy for us all as we take part in cleaning a community at a time,” he said.

Munyua however told The Standard that limited resources for the clean-ups remain a challenge, particularly when organizing large scale clean-ups.

“We also face some challenges when county askaris attempt to stop us from undertaking our activities. We also face resistance from street children who assume our clean ups are threatening their abodes,” he said.

Munyua, a Bachelors in Commerce Specializing in Entrepreneurship and Marketing graduate at Strathmore University says that he aims at expanding the initiative to rope in more youths.

“We shall do this through increased awareness, partnerships, and outreach efforts to do regular large scale clean ups and strive for change with no littering campaigns. We also want to be the voice for environmental change via clean ups,” Munyua said.

He said the long-term goal is to instill a culture of environmental responsibility within communities, leading to lasting behavioral change and improved environmental outcomes.

“We look forward to any support towards the clean-up activities and awareness campaigns. This will enable us reach more people and have a greater impact. Already, Ujamaa Waste Services Limited has helped us during disposals of the waste after collection,” Munyua said.

He however says that donations of cleaning equipment such as hand gloves, trash bags, litter pickers and logistical support would help the youths conduct successful clean-up events.

“The support we need can also include helping us to raise awareness about environmental issues and promoting community participation during our Clean Ups.”

Munyua said that the youths also seek to on-board street children to participate in the clean ups.

Munyua said that he is also inspired by Elizabeth Wathuti, a young environment and climate activist who nurtures young people to be environmentally conscious.

“With passion in striving to have a safe, clean and healthy environment for all and educating people on not littering, we hope to emulate Wathuti’s actions by encouraging for clean ups,” said Munyua.

“I have also recognized the urgent need for environmental action on a global scale and felt compelled to dedicate myself to this cause and contribute to meaningful change by having regular large scale clean ups,” he said.

But even for those who may not have direct support, Munyua says that each has a role to play in environmental conservation.

“Take small steps in your daily life to educate others who litter. This way, we can all work together towards a safe, clean and healthy environment. Also support policies and initiatives that promote environment conservation and sustainability,” he said.

Mitchell Ndunge, one of the volunteers said she was intrigued during the Kasarani are clean up when the local church joined them in the cleaning exercise  and even providing them with food and refreshments after the exercise.

The young conservationist also encourages the public to get involved in local community clean-up events and conservation projects as they provide a chance to network and build meaningful connections.

Related Topics


Trending Now


Popular this week