Helping Community With Circular Economy: Waste Management And Livelihood Programs At Kurla, Mumbai

Often times this garbage, particularly plastic waste, ends up in the Mithi River which flows in the neighbourhood

Earth5R team is working with RiverRecycle, United Nations Technology Innovation Labs, and VTT to clean up Mithi river in Mumbai with the help of plastic debris recovery machine funded by Huhtamäki, which can remove 60 tonnes of plastic per day.

But these efforts could only succeed with the involvement and support of the local community near Mithi river.


The issue with improper garbage disposal at Kurla not only affects the ecosystem at Mithi river but is also the cause of worry to the residents as they are at threat due to the unhygienic conditions around their residence.

Earth5R has devised Livelihood Programs and Citizen Training Programs based on a circular economy model which involve and encourage people from all age groups to participate in this social reform.

This is achieved by training the residents in:

  • Waste Management
  • Composting
  • Upcycling and repurposing
  • Recycling

The volunteers work with children, adults, and senior citizens and teach them the basics of Waste Segregation through easy to understand and fun activities.

The Earth5R team engages the children in games and quizzes designed to teach them waste management in a fun and easy way.


The circular economy model focuses on bring the ‘waste’ back into the system rather while generating income for the community.

The Livelihood Program teaches the people of the community, especially the women, skills which helps them to this waste into useful products.

The local women are learning to repurpose waste clothes, plastic and paper into products and the Earth5R team is helping them marketing skills which helps them connect to the local market. This initiative has helped empower the women of the community by making them financially independent.

The waste segregation activity also connects the rag-pickers in the locality where the recyclables collected at the end of segregation help them generate income while keeping the recyclable materials out of the landfills.


Earth5R is an environmental organization from India with its head office at Mumbai. It works with the NGO sector, Companies and helps them conduct environmental Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs across India.

Earth5R specializes in circular economy based projects. Earth5R also offers short term and long term environmental courses and fellowships.

Reported by Riya Dani