Renacer Lanzone or the Pheonix of the barrio Lazone is a social organisation run by Adam Guevara. Adam had an idea over twenty years ago, that CEAMSE should send the trucks to groups of cartoneros, before putting the garbage in the ground, so that they could take the recycling materials, and leave less waste to be buried. He tried with many different Presidents of CEAMSE but it was not until the present one agreed, over three years ago, that Adam was able to realise his dream and set up a social factory or sorting centre in Lanzone district. His project was so successful there are now four centres and four more planned on the CEAMSE site – some of which we had already seen. Adam’s group are very successful, he told us, because they have been trained by INTI – the same plastics group that we work with, to separate the plastic waste very well and to sell each type individually. They make a lot more money than the other groups as a result – up to 20 pesos an hour. Adam cares very much for his group and when I asked what criteria he had for choosing people to work there he told me it was on the basis of need – if they have more children etc. He even keeps a section of the factory as a store of PET bottles to become a Christmas bonus at the end of the year.
Training seems to be an important part of the success here. INTI training the technical selection process and also Suarez and Neumann, a consultant engineer, working for the University of Sarmiento and CEAMSE, training them in roles and responsibilities, team work and conflict resolution, the context, history of recycling and cartoneros as well as the more technical matters. Adam is very keen to move on with us and he seems to be an extremely innovative thinker. As wary as we are of CEAMSE, we would love to work with Adam’s Pheonix.