If you live in Lagos - or have ever visited during the rainy season - you're certainly no stranger to what happens once it drizzles even a little on the island.
The drains are clogged up with garbage because waste disposal in the overpopulated Lagos is a constant battle. Many low-income homes do not have the facilities or awareness for recycling. The government currently collects only 40% of city garbage while only 13% of recyclable materials are salvaged from landfills.
Four years ago, Bilikiss Adebiyi-Abiola came up with a solution which had her quit her job as a Software Programmer in the US and return to Lagos to execute an idea that came to her while she attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) - an idea that has become Wecyclers.
Wecyclers, with some help from the Lagos State Waste Management Authority (LAWMA), collects waste from low-income communities and rewards households with redeemable points that can later be exchanged for prizes - and at this point Lagosians everywhere paid attention.
The waste materials (including plastic bottles, plastic bags and aluminum cans) are collected using low-cost bicycle-powered collection vehicles called “wecycles” and then sold to recycling companies. With the great job wecyclers has been doing and a potentially great investment on the way, it is clear they are only getting started.
To learn more about wecyclers, go to their website.