Families rely on landfill site for food in Argentina slums – BBC News

Families rely on landfill site for food in Argentina slums – BBC News

In one of the poorest slums in Argentina, hundreds of families rely on a huge landfill site to feed their children.

Argentina used to be among the most prosperous countries in Latin America.

But now after years of economic difficulties, the UN estimates that around one third of the population suffers from food insecurity.

The Covid epidemic led to lockdowns in which many businesses failed.

Many in the country are suffering – this community has gone to extraordinary lengths to stay alive.

Argentina used to be one of the most
prosperous countries in Latin America
but
not anymore
today more than one third of the
population lives below the poverty line
here hundreds of families rely on this
landfill to feed their children
some
even eat from it
it can be dangerous
the global crisis had a detrimental
effect in argentina
the pandemic
crushed the country’s already fragile
economy
and the war in ukraine
made things even worse
all over latin america the number of
people who are hungry keeps going up
[Music]
this is concordia one of the poorest
cities in argentina
more than half of the people here live
under the poverty line
we’re entering the islam el silencio
it’s called like this because during the
day all you can hear is the sound of
flies
most houses are made out of wood
they look precarious
entire families of six or seven live and
sleep in the same room
it’s mainly children here
left alone all day long to fend for
themselves
monica tries to help them as best you
can
momento
to
and that’s because some parents most of
whom are teenagers spend all day long
working
here
this is the biggest landfill in the city
more than 100 tons of rubbish gets
dumped here every day
it’s an ocean of garbage glass plastic
food waste
but
this is not how the people here see it
they see
an opportunity like julio
julio wakes up at dawn
he walks to the landfill which is right
next to his home
here he looks for materials that he can
resell to a recycling center
everyone here is doing the same it’s a
real business for them
[Music]
it’s only nine in the morning and the
sun is scorching hot but there’s so many
people here because this landfill is
their only means of survival
they wait for garbage trucks to get here
they call them kukash short for
cucarachas
cockroaches
as soon as they unload they all latch
into the ravish to try to get hold of
the most
valuable materials
then they separate the materials into
different bags
and when they fill them up they sell
them to a place like this a recycling
center
imagine working in these conditions
only to make a few pesos per week
really
[Music]
but for julio it’s all worth the risk
he’s managed to build his home with
things that he’s picked up from the
landfill
[Music]
he’s going through all this effort for
[Music]
julia’s struggle is the story of many
people here
argentina had one of the longest
lockdowns in the world
prices went up
people lost their jobs
and in here
many kids were left behind when school
is closed
[Music]
rocio is one of them
she lives in islam near julio
[Music]
foreign
[Music]
[Music]
[Music]
started working at the landfill when she
was just eight years old she would go in
the afternoon after school
but now that she can’t access any
education
this has become her whole life
sometimes razio has no option but to eat
what she finds
[Music]
[Music]
but
what julio and rosio are going through
doesn’t just happen in slums
argentina experienced the highest growth
in food insecurity between 2014 and 2020
in all of latin america
now more than one third of the
population
doesn’t have access to enough nutritious
food
the war in ukraine has made things even
worse
inflation is at more than 60 percent in
argentina only second to venezuela in
the region
food is ever more expensive
this means that for many teenagers
surviving of this landfill
and building their whole lives around it
is their only option
[Music]
the future
looks uncertain
but julio
and rocio remain hopeful
for
[Music]
[Music]

 

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