WIEGO at ExpoCatadores 2012

Latin American waste pickerExpoCatadores 2012, held in Sao Paulo, Brazil in late November, brought together 1,500 waste pickers from 25 Brazilian states and several countries, along with government leaders and visitors, to exchange experiences and ideas around waste picking. Discussion topics included the implementation of the National Waste Policy, the closing of open dumps and waste management plans.

This third National & International Gathering of Waste Pickers provided an opportunity for exchanging experiences and ideas.Along with Brazilian and Latin American experts in solid waste management, the professional catadores were focused on strengthening their place in the production chain of recyclable materials. The event had an international presence as waste pickers were represented from 12 Latin American countries, India, Benin, Kenya, South Africa and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

See event highlights on the Global Alliance of Wastepickers' site.

Lucia at ExpocatadoresWIEGO’s Global Waste Pickers Coordinator, Lucia Fernandez spoke at the main plenary on the opening day. Lucia presented on the Global Alliance for inclusive recycling, the global threats that undermine waste picker livelihoods, and the ongoing struggles around the world. (See her presentation slides.) The event offered an opportunity to introduce the newest member of WIEGO’s waste picker team, Federico Parra – our Regional Coordinator for Waste Pickers in Latin America – to the delegates from RedLacre and beyond. In partnership with MNCR and with funding by Avina, WIEGO also facilitated the attendance of African and Indian delegates of waste picker organizations to ExpoCatadores through the efforts of our travel and logistics manager, Justina Pena Pan. Side meetings to discuss networking, programming and sustainability plans are also taking place.

You can meet some of the waste pickers who travelled to share their issues through this Inclusive Cities blog posting.

To learn more, see the ExpoCatadores website (in Portuguese).