Soneva Namoona has expanded its Alun Balun Resale Market to Noonu Atoll. A collaboration with six island councils and Women’s Development Committees (WDCs) of Noonu atoll, the market was launched simultaneously across six islands on Friday (2 June).
According to Soneva Namoona, the market aims to instill a culture of reuse and resource conservation while empowering women as environmental stewards by building leadership skills and providing additional exposure to WDCs.
Under the initiative, WDCs intercept reusable items from households, clean and repair them if necessary, and transport them to neighboring Namoona islands for resale.
By redirecting reusable items away from Island Waste Management Centers, the program reduces waste sent to landfills and incinerators.
“We are excited to bring the Alun Balun Resale Market to Noonu Atoll. Our goal is to foster a paradigm shift in how we approach reusing items throughout the atoll. The market also connects the Women’s Development Commitees and have allowed us to strengthen relationship amongst the committees,” said Milhana Ibrahim, Kudafari WDC President.
The Alun Balun Resale Market was first introduced in October 2022 as a collaborative effort between Soneva Namoona and WDCs from seven islands in Baa Atoll.
The rotation of goods allows WDCs to overcome the challenge of selling used items among a limited number of households. Since its inception, the Alun Balun Resale Market has generated approximately MVR20,000 and prevented over 500 items from ending up in landfills or being burned, Soneva Namoona said.
“We are working very closely with the Soneva Namoonaa team and WDCs to try and make the Alun Balun resale market a regular event in Noonu atoll – one that would outlast the term of the current elected councils and WDCs. That is why we are doing all we can to institutionalise this initiative. This program will create a lasting impact on waste management and help promote a circular economy in the atoll,” said Mohamed Basheer, Noonu Atoll Council President.
The Alun Balun Resale Market in Noonu Atoll seeks to replicate the positive outcomes achieved in Baa Atoll, fostering a sense of environmental responsibility, and encouraging the reuse of goods.
“We are delighted to support the expansion of the Alun Balun Resale Market to Noonu Atoll. This will help create a culture of reusing goods which would otherwise needlessly end up in landfills. We commend the efforts of the Women’s Development Committees and the support from Noonu Atoll Council and the island councils in making this initiative a reality. Together, we can make a positive impact on waste management and environmental sustainability,” said Khadeeja Hamid from Soneva Namoona.
Soneva Namoona is a Non-Governmental Organisation that is pioneering a new approach to waste management in the Maldives, by focusing on island and inter-island level solutions. Having piloted their sustainable waste management programs in Baa Atoll, the NGO is also the strategic and technical consultant to the Noonu Atoll Council to implement the Namoona Sustainable Waste Management model across the atoll.