Factors Influencing Sustainable Solid Waste Management: a Case of Thika Town, Kenya
This study was aimed at analyzing Factors influencing sustainable solid waste management in Thika Town. The importance of a clean environment needs not to be over-emphasized for the survival of our generation and the future generations. The community as the main beneficiary of a sustainable solid waste management has to play a bigger role than has been realized. This can only happen through active community participation. The community has to be empowered to undertake this important role. The right policies have to be in place, the community has to be sensitized on their roles and imparted with knowledge of the environment and cost sharing has to be considered to increase resources available for conserving the environment. The research was guided by the following objectives: to determine the influence of community mobilization in the sustainability of solid waste management; to investigate the influence of Environmental knowledge in the sustainability of solid waste management; to determine the influence of cost sharing in the sustainability of solid waste management; and to determine the influence of sanitation on sustainable solid waste management. The research design used was descriptive survey design. A research instrument was developed which was a questionnaire. The research instrument was discussed with the supervisor and other experts to determine its content validity. A pilot test was done in Juja Town. The reliability of the research instrument was determined by split half method and the Cronbach’s coefficient Alpha used to calculate reliability. The researcher then collected data in Thika town. The population was stratified into two, the beneficiaries and the service providers. The heads of the household were sampled through simple random sampling while a census was done for all the service providers. The data collected was be analyzed by use of SPSS. The researcher determined relations and correlations and gave recommendations about Thika Town. This research project determined the factors that influence sustainable solid waste management. It gives light and help in decision making in making the environment better for the residents. From the study the awareness of the benefits of solid waste management should be created and the general population mobilized. The county government should be the initiator of community participation. The several methods studied would be effective in changing mindset of the population. The TV media, public Barrazas, posters and person to person should be utilized depending on the budgets available. The knowledge learned in was found sufficient though there is need to including more learning in order to boost the confidence of the population on their undertaking as regards to solid waste management. The system of cost sharing should be improved by involving all stakeholders from the initial stages in order to communicate the benefits and increase ownership of the programs. The locals should be decision makers to strengthen the procedures. The sanitation facilities are not designed with the involvement of the locals to ensure that they are convenient and sufficient. The study recommends another study on other social factors affecting the performance of Sustainable solid waste in Thika which may not have been identified in this study. The study recommends studies on the treatment of the solid waste at the final stages and how its effects on the population.
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