Voices of Resilience

The COVID crisis has made clear how essential waste workers and waste pickers are to maintaining healthy cities. As we recover, GAIA’s network members will play a key role in rebuilding their communities. Read stories of some of the waste pickers and waste workers at the frontlines of this pandemic who are fighting to provide essential services for their communities in spite of local governments that have failed to give them adequate safety equipment and worker protections.

Success Stories

Around the world, waste pickers are leading their cities towards zero waste.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

The recycling system is run by 12 waste picker cooperatives contracted by the government managing 5,300 registered workers.

Sasolburg, South Africa

The Vaal Park cooperative services 3,000 households with source-separated door-to-door collection of recyclable materials.

Pune, India

The SWaCH cooperative provides source segregated door-to-door waste collection service to over 840,000 households, collecting almost 400,000 tonnes of waste per year.

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