Eight training modules for waste management employees were submitted for accreditation to the Qualifications Agency in order to obtain the status of publicly recognized organizers of adult education activities (JPOA). Experts predict that by the end of 2030, 20,000 new jobs in the field of green jobs will be opened in Serbia, and it is necessary to follow the trends and harmonize the education system with them.
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, in cooperation with PUK “Čistoća” from Novi Sad, organized training for 60 people engaged in the waste management sector.
“As the working conditions in the utility industry are difficult and often include specific hazards associated with operational procedures at the landfill, the purpose of the program was to improve the knowledge, skills and abilities of workers, i.e. to increase safety and health at work,” stated Marija Bogdanović, leader of the global programs “Migration for Development (PME)” and “Migration and Diaspora (PMD)” in Serbia within GIZ.
Based on the previous experiences of GIZ activities in Serbia, in cooperation with the Center for Circular Economy and Climate Change (CECC) from Novi Sad, curricula were developed for 8 special modules for workers engaged in waste management, which include work on waste separation, handling of special machinery which is used in waste management, but also in special waste streams, i.e. construction waste.
Siniša Mitrović, head of the Center for Circular Economy, Serbian Chamber of Commerce, pointed out that it is important that the results of this activity be translated into documentation for the creation of a module in dual education – waste management technician, first of all, bearing in mind the significant number of employees in the public utility sector in Serbia – over 50,000.
“Green jobs, especially locally, can have a significant impact on strengthening the resilience of the local community, the inclusion of vulnerable groups and the fight against poverty. In the context of saving natural resources and circularity of products, the need for new knowledge and skills in waste management is growing, all because of the increased generation of municipal waste and its reuse. Knowledge and skills in technical management of equipment, digitization of processes and safety and health at work must become part of the corporate culture of public utility companies in Serbia. When we talk about the potential for new green jobs in Serbia, it is estimated that by 2030, 20,000 new jobs could be created through various green jobs,” concluded Mitrović.
In Serbia, there are no (higher) educational institutions that specialize in this type of education, so it is of great importance that all eight modules have been submitted for accreditation so that in the future they will be available to workers engaged in these jobs.
“In the waste management sector, the largest number of employees are with low qualifications. This specific type of profession that deals with high-risk jobs can be considered as subject to occupational hazards, health problems and injuries related to the workplace and therefore requires a legal basis for adequate education and training, as defined for many other professions in public sector”, stated Valentina Đureta, project manager of PME.
She adds that a typical day for a waste management worker includes handling equipment and machinery, being in an environment that often includes harmful emissions, dust, smoke, flies, unpleasant odors, heat, cold.
“At the same time, it is necessary to be constantly aware of compliance with security measures, but also to react quickly in emergency situations.”
The PME program is part of the wider initiative “Return to new opportunities” of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and provides support in social and economic (re)integration to returnees from abroad and the local population, especially those from vulnerable groups.
Source: Energetski portal Srbije by www.energetskiportal.rs.
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