On Saturday, June 25, during our cleanup action with the teenagers of Hogar del Niño in Río Dulce, Waste Free Oceans has received the unexpected visit from Patricia Villegas y Orlando Salvador Jorge Villegas, spouse and son of Orlando Jorge Mera, former Minister of Environment and Natural Resources of the Dominican Republic, tragically assassinated on June 6, 2022.
It was such an honor for us and for Hogar del Niño to meet Patricia Villegas y Orlando Salvador Jorge Villegas as well as representatives of the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources coming to support our actions in the Dominican Republic.
In 2019, Waste Free Oceans signed an agreement with the Dominican government to implement in Santo Domingo, the capital, a full-scale recycling plant which would collect plastic waste from the entire Dominican Republic and some Caribbean countries. The plant will recycle all types of plastics, ranging from PET and HDPE to mixed plastics. The latter will be used to build social houses and emergency shelters. It will also recycle end-of-life plastics which will be turned into green fuel.
WFO has also a master project to cleanse, restore and develop the rivers Ozama and Isabela in the Dominican Republic.
With the tragic death of Orlando Jorge Mera, with whom the discussions had significantly progressed, the project has been provisionally on standby, but the visit of his family has given us hope to one day being able to implement it.
During the visit, we discussed this project as well as both our efforts to change the waste management behavior in the Dominican Republic.
It is an immense pleasure for an environmental NGO like ours to feel supported by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources.