>Several months ago, Kinzi told me about a project that madrasat Konouz (her kids’ school) was doing to help the Filipinas living within their consulate. These poor souls are stuck living in no man’s land until either their employers release them or their families raise the money to get them home again. When we went, we met many of the young ladies most of whom told stories of non-payment of wages (six months into the contract), working from 5 am until 2 am every day with no pay forthcoming at the end of the month, refrigerators locked so that they wouldn’t eat the food in the house and other such inhuman situations. One of the faculty at the Konouz’s school started a program collecting aluminum cans to raise funding to feed and house them within the consulate. So, we began to collect our cans and give them to Kinzi. And then our next door neighbor’s Filipina helper did the same… and then her upstairs neighboring Filipina did the same. Great ideas spread quickly.
But, imagine the unexpected upside. We used to be literally plagued with men coming to dig through our trash. While I have no issue with people finding usable items in the trash, these men would rip open bags, toss trash onto the ground, and grab the cans leaving a terrible mess. Much of that mess blew into our garden. It was terrible. But let me tell you something funny, I haven’t seen a dumpster diver in about 6 months. Seems that’s probably about the same amount of time we’ve been saving our cans for the Filipinas. I expect that with three families keeping their aluminum out, it became less lucrative. I expect our family alone is the largest consumer of beverages in cans (not me, but El 3atal does like his Diet 7 Up) on the block. And, since the dearth of dumpster divers, our trash-in-the-garden problem has improved significantly as well. We see far fewer floating papers, plastic bags, and general debris. If ever I’ve heard of a good reason for recycling, this is it… Forget the long term environment (okay don’t but if that doesn’t motivate you) and think of your trashy garden, teehee.