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Towards a Circular, Green and Inclusive Economy: SWIFT Programme Unveiled

  • By KCIC Communications
  • February 15, 2024
  • 0 Comment

The Kenya Climate Innovation Center (KCIC) has unveiled ‘Sustainable Waste Innovation for a Future in Transition (SWIFT)’, a waste management programme targeting Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) operating in the waste management sector in Kenya.  The three-year programme is funded by the IKEA Foundation to the tune of USD 5.1 Million.

The programme’s primary objective is to transform the waste management sector through tailored business support to waste enterprises and by strengthening waste management policies in Kenya to accelerate the transition to a circular, green, and inclusive economy.

The SWIFT programme will support 110 enterprises from across the country through business advisory, technical assistance, mentorship, and financing to bring to life innovative business models that embrace the principles of circular economy.

KCIC CEO Joseph Murabula makes his remarks

On the policy front, the SWIFT Programme will strategically collaborate with the national government and five counties; Nairobi, Mombasa, Nakuru, Kisumu, and Uasin Gishu to support the development of policies and regulations to incentivise public and private sector engagement in sustainable waste management.

Speaking during the official launch on Thursday, February 15, 2024 in Nairobi, the PS State Department for Environment and Climate Change, Eng. Festus Ng’eno underscored the need for a collaborative approach in addressing the challenge of waste management in the country.

“The launch of this programme presents a significant opportunity for Kenya to showcase its leadership in sustainable waste management on the global stage. Together, we can demonstrate that a cleaner, greener future is within our reach. Collectively, we can build a future where waste is not a burden but a valuable resource,” he said.

The programme ultimately targets generating over 6,000 direct and indirect jobs, improving the livelihoods of over 5,000 households, and seeing supported enterprises generate up to USD 10 million in revenue.

Aligned with both KCIC’s mission and the IKEA Foundation’s commitment to climate action and improving everyday life, the SWIFT Programme is positioned to promote green entrepreneurship in the waste management sector and subsequently lead to job creation, improved living conditions for communities, while addressing environmental challenges.

IKEA Programme Manager, Patrick Obonyo makes his remarks at the launch

“We are proud to work with KCIC to create green jobs to enable people in Kenya to afford a better life for themselves and their families, but also to protect the planet in a meaningful way. Because we know for instance that waste and dumpsites contribute 20% of methane emissions,” said Patrick Obonyo, IKEA Foundation’s Programme Manager.

“As a Foundation and only KCIC, we cannot solve the problem alone. We believe that the opportunity here is for everyone to be able to do something. We can either sit and complain or decide to act at an individual level to keep our environment clean. There’s also an opportunity for other donors and development partners to come in and support this programme, so we can collectively accelerate Kenya’s transition to a circular economy,” he added.

Joseph Murabula, Chief Executive Officer of Kenya Climate Innovation Center, said “The launch of this programme today underscores our belief that climate change presents not only a challenge but also opportunities for innovation and economic growth. Together, let us build a future where waste is not a problem to be managed but a valuable resource to be harnessed.”

The call for applications is currently open to all enterprises meeting the eligibility criteria outlined by KCIC. Applications can be submitted online through the KCIC website, with the deadline set for February 29, 2024.

For detailed information on eligibility criteria and application forms, interested SMEs can apply through the KCIC website https://www.kenyacic.org/swift/.