Nica Richards
Deputy online news editor
4 minute read
7 Jun 2020
7:48 pm

Pilot programme shows residents’ willingness to support waste reclaimers

Nica Richards

A study has shown that creating personal relationships with reclaimers increases the likelihood of waste being separated at home, and provides much-needed support to ailing informal reclaimers hit hard by lockdown.

BOTTLED-UP: Two reclaimers help sort PET plastic bottles for recycling. A pilot programme in Joburg has helped solidify the reclaimer-resident relationship and empowered residents to recycle at home. Image: Supplied

A unique recycling pilot programme has renewed the essential relationship between waste reclaimers and residents. The programme, titled “Building an Inclusive Circular Economy: Recycling with Reclaimers in Johannesburg”, has been supported by PETCO, Wits, Unilever and the African Reclaimers Organisation (ARO), along with residents association and other corporates in the sector since 2019, and provided a much-needed boost to embattled informal reclaimers, who suffered due to the Covid-19 lockdown. The programme also boosted the number of households that recycle, and provided income opportunities in the informal sector. At present, the pilot has been launched in Auckland Park and Brixton, but...