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Boost for Latin America’s informal collectors

Paraguay – The Coca-Cola Company, together with the AVINA foundation, the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), the IDB Water and Sanitation Division and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, has launched the first Latin American programme to support informal ‘waste’ collectors.

The objective is to help more than four million informal recyclers who earn their living collecting recyclable materials to assimilate into local chains and formal organisations with better working conditions.
The programme, launched late last month in Paraguay during the VIII Inter-American Conference on Corporate Social Responsibility, will make use of the lessons learned from projects under way in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Peru and other developing countries, taking these experiences as models for educational institutions, civil society organisations and other participants.
‘This programme provides us with the opportunity to contribute to the development of sustainable communities in two areas of particular relevance: social and economic inclusion of people living under very adverse conditions; and environmental protection,’ said Jose Octavio Reyes, President of Coca-Cola Latin America. ‘This programme also contributes to our vision of “zero waste” for our packaging, where increased use of recycled materials in our bottles constitutes a central part of this vision.’
Coca-Cola, which has ploughed US$ 2 million into the programme, has been involved in initiating ‘green’ projects worldwide that draw attention to environmental issues, including the necessity of recycling.
 

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