The Reciclo recycling cooperative in Brasilia, future beneficiary of the Socioeconomic Integration of the Collectors of Recyclable Materials project, promoted by AVINA, IDB/MIF, MDS and MNCR.


In Latin America 50 million people are still without access to drinking water and 124 million live without sanitation. The Agua Clara Consortium is helping to meet the Millennium Development Goals for Water and Sanitation that aim to reduce by half the number of people without these services by 2015.




AVINA and the Latin American Network of Waste Pickers Win Funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Support Sustainable Recycling in Latin America

AVINA has been carrying out a strategy of support to the Latin American Network of Waste Pickers that promotes the organization of waste pickers in Latin America, increases their social and economic inclusion and strengthens the network’s secretariat. In 2008, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation joined AVINA by supporting the initiative with a five-year, USD 5 million grant.

A recycling pilot project will also be launched to increase and strengthen the organizational, social and economic capabilities of Brazil’s National Movement of Recyclable Materials Collectors (MNCR). This part of the initiative will investigate ways to integrate the voice of the urban poor into the municipal planning system. Specifically, it looks into formal, reliable mechanisms that generate additional revenue for waste pickers, including the payment for refuse collection and recycling services, carbon credit certificates and other environmental services.

AVINA, CARE and ECODES Establish the Agua Clara Consortium

In 2008 AVINA, CARE International in Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Iberian organization Ecología y Desarrollo (ECODES) established a strategic alliance known as the Agua Clara Consortium. Its aim is to strengthen, promote and bring visibility to community organizations in Latin America and the Caribbean that provide drinking water and sanitation to their constituents, increasing coverage and improving the quality of water services. The consortium has identified the enormous potential these organizations have to provide water-related services to at least 18 million people in the region who are still lacking access.

According to World Bank data, these community-based providers of water and sanitation services currently serve approximately 40 million people in Latin America. By helping to strengthen and expand these providers in Latin America, the consortium seeks to contribute to meeting the Millennium Development Goals for water and sanitation, which seek to halve the number of people around the world without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation.

During its first six months of operations, the consortium made presentations at the Pabellón del Faro of citizens’ initiatives at the Water Fair held in Zaragoza, Spain in 2008, and the 4th Conference of Corporate Social Responsibility of the Inter-American Development Bank in Cartagena, Colombia in December 2008, bringing the achievements of these community organizations to a global audience.

AVINA, the Inter-American Development Bank, Brazil’s Ministry of Social Development, and the Brazilian National Movement of Waste Pickers Join Forces in a USD 7.9 Million Recycling Project

The project “Socioeconomic integration of collectors of recyclable materials,” developed by AVINA in 2008, has mobilized a total of USD 7.9 million that will be invested over a period of four years to develop an innovative model for including the lowest income groups in chains of value creation through social integration and the professionalization in productive activities. The alliance brings together Brazil’s National Movement of Collectors of Recyclable Materials (MNCR), the IDB, the Brazilian Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Alleviation as well as several corporations. AVINA will administer the alliance initiative, which contributes directly to the economic sustainability of waste collectors and their families through their integration into the recycling value chain, the development of new income-generating alternatives and the strengthening of links with the surrounding community. The initiative will take place in five communities in the Brazilian cities of Belém, Brasilia, Salvador, Abreu e Lima and Aracaju. The project was developed with the intention of being replicated in other Brazilian cities and Latin American countries.

In addition to coordinating all the other organizations involved, AVINA will be responsible for the project’s technical management and operations and ensuring an efficient interface between funders and the local partners, who will be responsible for carrying out the project on the ground. All direct costs will be covered by contributions from the investment partners.

According to Claudio Corellese, senior operations official of IDB’s Multilateral Investment Fund team, “The project was received with great interest by bank directors, especially due to its comprehensive approach to community development and sustainability, including the social, economic and environmental perspectives.” The IDB and AVINA are aligned in their interest in broadening this initiative both from the methodological and geographical perspectives.

AVINA and the Inter-American Development Bank Agree On the Joint Development of a Donors Database

AVINA and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) agreed to jointly develop a database that will be available on the internet, allowing Latin Americans to learn more about philanthropic organizations that invest in Latin America.

This collaboration is a result of the study “Donors and Latin American Civil Society: European Donors, International NGOs, Latin American Donors, and US Foundations,” financed and carried out by AVINA in 2007 and 2008.

AVINA received a co-investment of USD 100,000 from the IDB’s Office of Outreach and Partnership for the expansion and communication of the database, which will be known as the Latin America Donor Index. This product will be configured as a relational, multilingual database that is easy to use and accessible to those who do not have a fast Internet connection.

The database will have functions such as searches by category, name and type of organization, the size of annual investments in Latin America, geographic focuses, thematic focuses, offices in Latin America and contact information. Donors will be able to upload information on their investments and donations.

The Latin America Donor Index, which will be launched in April 2009, responds to a need identified by AVINA partners for more information on sources of finance in Latin America.