Selling Sponge collected from Garbage Dump – This is how I survive

Waste, dump or decomposing is a natural process, for everything we use gets expired or useless with the passage of time and thus we dump it in a corner in our house or when totally useless, we throw it away in the garbage.

The garbage is later on collected and dumped at a site located somewhere away from the living area or the colonies.  The waste collectors are nearly everywhere in the world, even in Saudi Arabia, who collect and sell the re-useable stuff to the workshops and vendors who refurbish and reuse the stuff.[irp]

Some of the stuff is sold on the Black market, which is of course health hazardous. This is something alarming and needs attention.  The same type of story relates an Asian worker Mohammad Nazir. He rides his bicycle to the garbage dump located in the northern industrial zone of Hail every day.

He visits that area to dig up sponges from damaged car seats and household furniture. He then sells that sponge to the recycling factories. He told his story about how he survived, he said he sells this sponge and easily earn up to SR 800 per month, which encourage him to continue his work.

His salary from his basic work is not more than SR 800 which is not enough for his survival. He said that he goes to the garbage dump in the afternoon and extract some sponge from the damaged car seats and home furniture and take it to sell it to an Asian worker for SR 0.85 per kg later they sell it to the recycling plants.

He said, “by virtue of my work, I can only do this during two hours of my time which is my break from my main job, I use my bike to go to the nearest target looking for the sponge. “He added that he receives SR 800 a month and the same amount he earns from his main job.

He further said that there is a number of his colleagues who are doing the same job and it helps them to develop their skills. Some of his colleagues have taken it as their main job and they use to travel through their vehicles to distant garbage dump locations just to collect sponges.

This job has become the source of their survival. He said that the search for the sponge is useful especially since it does not cost very much. One of the worker, Jibril Mir, who buy sponges from these workers at SR 0.85 per kg, said that he collects that sponges at his home and later sell it to the recycling factories at SR2 per kg.

He said that he is working with a decoration shop that design furniture and buy quantities of spare sponge and recycle it to use it for new furniture. Hail residents are not happy with the situation. They called the municipality to check and control the situation and put an end to this situation as these are the main cause of pollution in the region.

They are waiting for the authorities to control the violation committed by these workers.  Saad Al-Thueni who is a president of the Media Center in the Hail Municipality revealed that some companies and factories dispose off their waste in the open land space in a different way they will immediately fill the land where there are garbage dumps.

He also said that if any violator will be caught dumping of the waste in the land he will be punished and fined according to the law and regulations. He further said that they cannot investigate the sponge activities as it is not municipalities responsibility, they will remove the waste as it is their duty.

No doubt, the resident of Hail is on the right point, these type of activities are the cause of serious air and land pollution. There should be proper checking to stop the people who are involved in these activities.

Source: Saudi Gazette