The history of this organization as elegant as any fictional movie; it is one of the success stories and the outcome of PRISM Project which was a joint venture of European Union and UK based INGO named Practical Action. The project aimed to improve the perilous living condition of Informal Waste Workers and attempted to raise awareness to both society and these waste workers. Informal waste workers do not have a static job schedule like working for 9 to 5 for which they are paid daily. They had a very poor living condition and society didn’t accept their work with dignity and respect. In such circumstances, the PRISM project was like a hope for the informal waste workers.
While project team drew concerns towards informal waste workers needs, the informal waste workers needed a stable financial condition and dignity in the society towards their work and themselves. With this, CIUD (Center for Integrated Urban Development), the implementing partner of PRISM Project took its steps towards empowering the informal waste workers. Eventually, Samyukta Safai Jagaran (SASAJA) was born in February 2013, becoming the first ever organization of waste workers in Nepal. The motto “by the waste workers and for the waste workers and of the waste workers” clearly justifies the existence of the organization. However, establishing an organization was never a motive of the founding members. They wanted to stabilize their financial situation for which they wanted to establish a cooperative. But, as per rules, an organization was a necessity to establish a cooperative. As such, organization was registered as a non-governmental, non-profit, non-political and non-religious organization, under the chairmanship of Ms. Shanti Tamang, The organization then gave birth to Samyukta Safai Jagaran Saving and Credit Cooperative Limited.
In its initial years, the major focus was on fostering the cooperative to the fullest, It started from a raw dust and now, it has its savings enough to support the financial situation of waste workers in the community. Gradually, it was successful to catch an eye of a French INGO based in Nepal called Medecins du Monde – France (MdM – France). Today, with the project of “Healthy Waste Workers for Sustainable Waste Management.” they have joined hands to work for the recognition, occupation risk mitigation and empowerment of informal waste workers.