We can’t deny that unfortunately we’re constantly living in a construction zone. I believe that the work needs to be done in order for progress to keep moving forward, however at the same time we need to look at the bigger picture, we need to to cater first and foremost for the residents that live in Msida as they deserve to live in a peaceful and clean locality.
This is so much of a fact that each time I speak to anyone from Msida the first thing that they mention is the uncleanliness that we live in. In order to try and tackle this issue once and for all I’m suggesting that should I be honoured with your trust and support in next year’s Local Council Election I will try my best to implement these proposals within a very short period of time;
As one walks around Msida you can easily notice that although along the seafront there are dustbins, there’s simply not enough for the foot traffic our locality got. We need to think differently in order to achieve a different result. When it comes to installing dustbins there’s two main issues that one must take care of. The first being the cost to install the bins and secondly to regularly emptying these bins. In order to make this work I’m proposing the following;
The Local Council will issue a tender asking for suppliers to propose dustbins that are durable, big enough but not huge that will make them an eye sore and most of all, with enough space to allow for advertising on them. Once the quote is in hand the council will sell the advertising space on these bins in a way to raise funds for them to be bought. The purchasing of the bin, the installation of it and the artwork of the advert would be done at the expense of whoever is advertising on it. This way the council won’t be spending a penny to get these dustbins installed. The idea is that we will install a minimum of at least two dustbins in each street. That’s a minimum because in some streets we need much more.
My idea is to have solar-powered digital advertising panels on these dustbins. This will further increase the advertising potential
The second challenge is to regularly empty these dustbins. The plan is to add this to the list of duties to the waste collection contractor. It will obviously come at a cost, however the cost of this increase can be factored into the advertising costs on the same dustbins. The idea of the adverts isn’t for the council to make money, but to make them self sustainable.
Improving Waste Collection Schedule
One of the very first things that we need to do is to conduct a Marketing Research exercise to identify the best times and scheduling to collect waste. We need to treat different areas of Msida separately and not have a one size fit all approach. The needs for those living at Tal-Qroqq area differ from those living next to Junior College and next to the church. We need to involve all the stake holders, including the residents, the contractor, the Gozitan students that live in Msida and also the business community. Once each stake holder puts their needs and wants on the table we will then identify the perfect plan how to make it work.
An idea which I have always believed should be implemented is that Msida shouldn’t work on its own in the waste collection services we offer to our residents. Malta is very small! If Msida unites with Ta’ Xbiex, Gzira & Pieta and see the waste collection process in a more holistic approach, together we can end up having a better and more cost effective service. This will need to involve different local councils, however I believe that with a good proposal on how to offer a better service and save money, the councils will definitely be ready to play ball with us!
Various recycling campaigns throughout the year
Recycling! I love recycling. At home, my wife and I always make sure to recycle everything and I would love to spread this among my fellow neighbours all across Msida. In the last few years recycling improved, yet it’s still not enough. If you take a stroll in the streets on Tuesday morning, the day when the white/grey bags are collected you’ll see that there’s only a few number of bags outside. This means that recycling isn’t as widespread as I would like it to be.
My proposal is to organise various recycling campaigns all throughout the year. Every month we pick up a theme and organise more outreach where the council informs the residents on the campaign.
Have a look at this Pinterest link which shows a lot of different campaigns that we can adopt. Sometimes we don’t need to reinvent the wheel, simply polishing it up a bit can make a lot of difference!
Awareness is the single, most important thing that we can do in order to have a cleaner Msida. With awareness comes education and when people are educated about a subject, they will give it the attention it’s due. We need to organise a lot of awareness in order to change the mentality of our locality.
Just one of the ideas I have in mind is to organise an educational campaign together with the Msida Primary School where after organising a seminar to our children that educates them on recycling, the environment, the importance of keeping your locality clean etc, we can organise a competition. The idea is to appoint each child the Local Champion for a select number of streets in Msida. Moving forward the children will contact families living in these streets (obviously the council will help out in this!) and ask the residents of these streets to help the student win the yearly overall Local Champion award. The children will then need to keep a log of what they did to improve the environment in their allocated street and based on this report and also from the council’s observations throughout the year, the council will choose the overall Local Champion. This award will be awarded to the Local Champion at the Jum L-Imsida awards ceremony.
This is only one of the awareness campaigns I have in mind, I will definitely share more in the near future. The idea behind the above campaign is that when you involve children, their parents will help them and the people living in the streets will help out too. This way we would have created a nurturing and challenging environment where the children will get out of their comfort zone, they will get actively involved in keeping their hometown clean and also inspired the adults to do the same. This can only have a positive outcome for everyone involved!
Clean Msida events
Such events are becoming more and more popular all over the country. These are very positive events in which a group of people organise a cleanup. My idea is that the Local Council I will manage will actively organise regular cleanups focusing on different areas in Msida. If we get a good number of people that want to take part in these clean up events, we will organise multiple cleanups in different areas on the same day.
I would love to be able to get everyone that is interested in Msida involved in this. This includes all the social clubs, sports clubs, NGO’s, businesses in Msida and also the residents, including the Gozitan students, the African community in Msida and also the gaming community that is growing daily. Just imagine what a successful event it would be if everyone gets on board!
If we organise a cleanup once every quarter together with the above mentioned ideas it will definitely make a difference in our locality.
The above are just a few ideas of what we can do for Msida. There’s definitely a lot more ideas that we can discuss and I will be sharing these with you over the next few months.