Treasure hunt


A story of hope about recyclers who go through people’s trash in the hope to make money and be able to feed their families. I believe: “Another man’s trash, it’s another man’s treasure”. Indeed that quote is true for them, as they go through people’s trash in search of gold.

As most of the recyclers come from neighbouring countries around South Africa in the hope to better their lives. When looking for that life, they end up going through trash for a living. With a brief understanding of the job, a man who did not want to be photographed said most of the recyclers (males and females) have to wake up around 3:00 a.m. to go a distance before the waste truck can collect trash from the bins. Some will just go to the Dumping site, wait for the waste truck to dump trash and then go through it. As soon as the recyclers have enough trash, vans come to collect in exchange for money.

This photo essay is an effort to pay respect to people who are making means to survive without waiting for the government to help them. They are making a living out of nothing and progressing.