The resident-reclaimer recycling programme in Auckland Park and Brixton has been formalised as a pilot project that is supported by ARO, Unilever and the University of the Witwatersrand. The objectives of the ‘Recycling with Reclaimers” pilot are to demonstrate that reclaimers can provide an effective separation at source service, and that there are mechanisms through which independent reclaimers can be paid for their provision of the service.

The fee is based on the weight of materials collected. After reclaimers collect the separated bags of recyclables, they take these to the local Kingston Park to be weighed. This data is captured, and the reclaimers are paid a R0.50 service fee for each kg collected. The payment is sponsored by the Unilever for the duration of the pilot project. The reclaimers subsequently sell the materials to the buyer of their choice and receive their regular payment for the materials sold.

This is the first programme in the country to pay individual reclaimers for the service they provide. Rigorous monitoring and assessment is conducted, and at the end of the project the partners will share a workable model of reclaimer integration with national government, municipalities, reclaimer organisations and industry which can advance reclaimer integration across the country.

Forging strong relationships with residents and accountability to them is a core component of the pilot. ARO works closely with the Brixton Community Forum and the Auckland Park Residents Association to ensure that we receive and respond to feedback from residents. We also supply a weekly newsletter to residents of the Brixton/Auckland Park pilot programme in order to keep residents updated with progress, challenges and reminders. Newsletters typically contain weekly weights collected, reminders for residents such as times to put out bags with recyclable materials and thanking residents for successes.

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