Made up of over 7500 islands in the western Pacific, the Philippines has a population of over 100 million people and a population density about 10 times that of the United States. High rates of poverty, geography, and lack of infrastructure all contribute to the ocean plastic crisis.
The Philippines contributes nearly two million tonnes to the global ocean plastic problem. The Philippines is ranked by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation as the 3rd biggest plastic polluter in the world, behind only China and Indonesia.
Pilot leads to expansion
Our pilot branch opened in 2017 with the support of World Vision and Procter & Gamble in Baseco, Manila City.
By creating relationships with existing “junk shops”, informal collectors, and the local government, we were able to prove that we could increase collection and improve conditions for collectors.
We’re currently focused in Naga City, Camarines Sur Province working with the Balatas-Kadamay Association of Waste Pickers, and coordinating with the local government. We are implementing a cooperative model for 176 plastic collectors.
Subsistence to enterprise
From the margins to the centre
Previously at the bottom of the plastic recycling pyramid, the co-op now recovers close to 12,000 kg of plastics every month, selling cleaned and sorted plastics to Plastic Bank partner processors
The City Government of Naga has appointed the co-op as the aggregator of plastics collected across 27 facilities in all of the barangays (villages) within Naga City.
From the grassroots to the platform
The cooperative has become an influential voice in the dialogue on solid waste management and poverty reduction.
The UNESCAP engages the Balatas-Kadamay Association president as a representative of plastic collectors in global dialogues.
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