The International Alliance of Waste Pickers is a union of waste picker organizations representing more than 460,000 workers across 34 countries
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Estela Soria
Estela Soria

Estela Soria

Estela Soria lives and works in Costa Canaria, Uruguay. She works at the waste pickers’ cooperative, Cooperativa Ave Fenix, alongside twelve women and ten men of all different ages. Estela began working as an informal waste picker in 2002. Five years later, she began to work at the cooperative.

Her work as a waste picker includes many different responsibilities, including outreach at schools and in neighborhoods about the importance of source separation.

“I hope that the world will recognize my small country, where one of the biggest struggles is for gender equality, where men and women work together in all work spaces, and especially in the area of recycling,” said Estela. “Today many people discriminate against waste pickers and don’t see what we do as a profession.”