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Lagos, Nigeria

WeCyclers: selective precollection of waste

An innovative recycling service for the people in underprivileged neighbourhoods in Lagos.

WeCyclers is a Nigerian enterprise founded in 2012 which offers a plastic recycling service adapted to the needs of the people living in underprivileged neighbourhoods in Lagos. The enterprise promotes sorting and recycling at source and covers an area not served by the municipal refuse collectors.

The collection is done door-to-door by three-wheel scooter, which makes it possible to enter the narrow streets of these neighbourhoods not covered by municipal collection. The collectors are equipped with connected scales and an application, on the basis of which the families earn a certain number of points. They are then offered domestic appliances depending on the volume of waste collected.

Thanks to this SME, in partnership with the Lagos Waste Management Authority which delegates management of the service to the private sector, many young people have been offered their first formal job.

Digital tools play the role of intermediary between the company and the households and provide immediate access to objective, transparent data that act as an incentive to sorting, while at the same time facilitating contacts for the service.

Lessons learnt

  • Digital technology can help extend the solid waste pre-collection service to areas not covered by the municipality.
  • The stakeholders of the social and solidarity economy can be supported by the municipal authorities to converge towards joint improvement of the urban service.

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