When visiting the hostel Caminhos da Chapada in Palmeiras, Chapada Diamantina in the state of Bahia, we were introduced to one of the most interesting cooperating partners of HI hostels in Brazil; Grupo Ambientalista de Palmeiras (GAP).
GAP is run by perhaps some of the most enthusiastic people we have met so far on our travels. Every Wednesday GAP can be seen in the streets of Palmeiras, with pickup carts or the famous, colourful and arty van as they pick up recyclable waste from the citizens that sort their glass, metal, paper and plastic in different fractions.
The project was initiated by Joas Brandão Souza who 20 years ago started his own site for garbage collection and recycling on a plot outside of the city centre in Palmeiras. He is incredibly passionate about the environment, and lives on the grounds of GAP in his own fully recycled tree house! Joas knows how to value and build the most creative things out of what other people would consider to be waste.
As GAP receives limited funding, they rely mostly on donations in addition to the little money they earn from selling pressed plastic and cardboard paper (Would you like to support their work? Learn more here!). Although there are not many people like Joas, we can all let us inspire by his positive energy and his way of thinking different.
There might be an alternative solution to recycling the waste produced by your hostel. Take the time to see if there are any possibilities!