Calahunan is located at the border of the city of Iloilo, at the island of Panay, Philippines. It is a garbage dump and has a size of eight hectare - the whole garbage of Iloilo city is brought here. There are many people working and living around this dump side, they adapted to the situation: All the day they work here, to seperate and sell the new brought dump. They earn about 50 to 80 Pesos per day (≈ 0,90 to 1,50 Euro) out of this job. The river flowing trough Calahunan is black and polluted since years. But in the last years there was also some positive change: There are two new sedimentation tanks, the possibility to generate compost and alternative ways to earn money for the people living there trough working with the recyclable materials. They produce paper beads, plastic bags and paper briquettes out of the garbage. But the space at the side is getting smaller, the closing of Calahunan seems to be unavoidable. For the people living in this illegal houses this would mean a huge social and financial crisis. They are just tolerated by the city of Iloilo and cannot move. If the side will be closed, the inhabitants are dependent to alternative ways to earn money. Supported by the government, the inhabitants of Calahunan work more and more together with local designers who buy their recyceled products to make sustainable designproducts out of them.
Realized in cooperation with the DAAD and the AFOS Foundation for the travelling exhibition “CRAFT ACT. Philippine design in transition”