CNI-Social Service Institute (Nagpur)

CNI-SSI (Nagpur)

Nagpur is one of the few cities in India which has formal waste collection and disposal system services covering over 85 percent of areas within its jurisdiction. The average coverage for most cities in India is about 55-60 percent with minimal recycling. At the same time, there are more than 5,000 individuals in Nagpur that make their livelihoods from collecting, segregating and selling recyclable waste. Therefore, as formal waste collection services expand, many informal waste collectors are being denied access their livelihoods. CHF’s effort in Nagpur are designed to provide the waste collector community with opportunities for alternative livelihoods or to enable them to be integrated into the formal municipal solid waste management system.

CHF’s partnership with the Church of North India Social Services Institute (CNI-SSI) designs interventions to: a) improve the working conditions of waste collectors; b) provide alternative employment opportunities; and c) provide vocational training for waste collectors and other community members. CHF/SSI promotes access to health care and better hygiene practices amongst the waste pickers.

CNI-SSI has conducted surveys and mapped where the waste collector population lives in the city to better understand their socio-economic circumstances. The mapping exercise provided guidance on selecting target slum communities to target interventions.

CNI-SSI, with support from CHF, has succeeded in establishing a relationship with the local government with the aim of integrating waste pickers into city’s waste management system. The initial step of providing identification cards to waste collectors helped them gain access to the dump yard, which they were previously excluded from or vulnerable to harassment. CNI-SSI has also helped communities to start a savings and credit program and begin selling waste collectively which has already shown increase in profits by over 12 percent. Women traditionally in the waste collecting trade were targeted for alternative livelihoods and provided options to be trained in technical skills such as sewing, hair styling, cleaning and housekeeping. CNI-SSI has established strong relationships with the local government and facilitates health clinics for waste pickers and city-wide awareness about segregation of waste for recycling.

CNI-SSI is also improving the present working conditions in dump yards by providing a covered resting place with access to toilets and piped water. In addition, CNI-SSI has provided safety equipment to waste collectors such as gloves, masks, caps, scarves, iron rods and gumboots. To test the technical and financial feasibility of converting waste to energy, CNI-SSI assisted the local government to install two bio-digesters, which convert organic waste into energy and fertilizer..


Current Impact


500 informal waste collectors have improved the working conditions and safety equipment

375 waste collectors received vocational training and/or alternative employment opportunities

1,000 waste collectors have federated

3,397 waste collectors have received health care and health and hygiene education,