Save the earth, help the disabled

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FATHER Jean-Marie Chami is a Lebanese priest unlike any other – he integrates the protection of the environment with social work.

The 53-year-old studied architecture before becoming the priest of Notre Dame Church of the Annunciation in Beirut. In 1999, he set up non-profit organisation L’Ecoute, which recycles old goods. The proceeds from the business – US$9,000 (S$12,120) to US$11,000 a month – help people with disabilities.

Volunteers sort discarded goods collected at 200 collection points across Lebanon. “We sell sorted materials usually to factories that recycle paper, plastic and metal,” said Father Chami.

The volunteers also find purpose by helping out at the organisation.

“I used to stay at home,” said Anthony, 19, who has cerebral palsy. “Today, I am very happy to be working in a team.”



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