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Awarded 1st prize in the 'Foreign Documentaries' section of the 2003 Silver Camera awards
The cartoneros (cardboard collectors) of Buenos Aires.
Severe economical crisis increased the number of Buenos Aires cartoneros from 2000 to approx. 100.000. Daily they sift through the waste in search for paper in order to sell it to recycling.
Cartoneros travel in a special train El Tren Blanco. The carriages don't have chairs and glazed windows. Most of the cartoneros live in the slums and have to make a long trip to the city centre.
Most Cartoneros held regular jobs two years ago. Today they are forced to do this work.
Searching for paper in the waste disposal bags with bare hands.
Also children work at night. Some of them can't go to school because their family need the money.
The best spots to find paper are in the business areas.
Return trip to station José León Suárez with packed carts.
Station José León Suárez. Cartoneros in a hurry to get back to their houses. They come home with an average of 3 to 7 euros a day.