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Journal of Environmental and Public Health
Volume 2016, Article ID 6830163, 7 pages
Research Article

Practices, Concerns, and Willingness to Participate in Solid Waste Management in Two Urban Slums in Central Uganda

1Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health, School of Public Health, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala, Uganda
2Institute for Health and the Environment, University at Albany, State University of New York, Five University Place, Room A217, Rensselaer, NY 12144, USA

Received 8 October 2015; Accepted 18 February 2016

Academic Editor: Chit Ming Wong

Copyright © 2016 Trasias Mukama et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Poor solid waste management is among the major challenges facing urban slums in developing countries including Uganda. Understanding community concerns and willingness towards involvement in solid waste management improvement initiatives is critical for informing interventions in slums. Methods. We used a cross-sectional study to collect quantitative data from 435 residents in two urban slums in central Uganda. A semistructured questionnaire was used which assessed waste collection practices, separation and disposal methods, concerns regarding solid wastes, and willingness to participate in waste separation and composting. Data was analysed using STATA 12. Results. Food remains (38%) and plastics (37%) formed the biggest proportion of wastes generated in households. Most households (35.9%) disposed of general wastes by open dumping while 27% disposed of plastics by burning. Only 8.8% of households conducted composting while 55% carried out separation for some decomposable wastes. Separation was carried out for only banana peelings and leftover foods for feeding animals. Respondents expressed high willingness to separate (76.6%) and compost (54.9%) solid wastes. Conclusion. Practices in waste disposal and separation were poor despite high willingness to participate in initiatives to improve waste management, highlighting a need for authorities to engage residents of slums to improve their practices.