On December 18, MedCities and the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona (AMB), along with the Catalan Fund for Cooperation (FCCD), conducted the first training activity for municipalities in the framework of the Urban Training Centre project in Zarqa (Jordan). This first two-day training session focused on waste collection routes and benefited from the participation of more than 20 local staff from five different municipalities.

Rather than a fixed building, the urban training centre is conceived of as a series of capacity-building actions addressed toward Jordanian municipalities. The city of Zarqa has offered its community centre as a venue for developing the activities. In 2019, the training will be linked to waste collection, and complement the activities that the three institutions are carrying out in Mafraq on improving the efficiency of waste collection routes. The second activity of the Urban Training Centre will take place in March.

Jordan is currently facing a serious environmental crisis, exacerbated by the reception of a large number of refugees from Syria. Increased generation and uncontrolled dumping of solid waste, together with the lack of a proper management system, are exposing the area to worrying levels environmental pollution, prompting the urgent need for local administrations to take action.

A large amount of resources is being made available to face this challenge but there is currently a gap between resources and capacities, especially at the local level. MedCities is supporting these cities with the aim of establishing a stable training program addressing policy makers and technical staff.

Zarqa, As-Salt and Jerash are the three Jordanian members of the Association.