PBS' Independent Lens Series Brings Us "Garbage Dreams" by Mai Iskander - Why You Want to See This...

When I was a little girl, my mom would plop me down on the floor in front of the TV to watch PBS (Public Broadcasting Station).  Back in the dark ages when I was a kid, there weren’t dozens of television channels geared to kids like there are now.  PBS was where I learned to read with Big Bird and laughed myself silly when (what seemed like) thousands of ping pong balls would fall from the sky atop Captain Kangaroo’s head.

I was a big fan of PBS as a child and now that I am a mom, I have helped my children learn to love learning from PBS.  These days, there is a little less “show” and a lot more “commercials”, but PBS is still passionate about educating us all, young and old, about things we need to know to broaden our intellectual horizons.  Believe me when I tell you, Garbage Dreams by Mai Iskander, part of the PBS Independent Lens Series, should definitely be a part of your PBS education.

Mark your calendars for April 27, 2010 at 10:00 pm (check your local listings), when the PBS Independent Lens Series presents the documentary Garbage Dreams.  For those of us living in a country such as the United States, you will see firsthand just how really far behind we are in our efforts to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.   If you have children, this is a must see as it will solidify in their minds, just how much of a difference young people can really make, and what a significant impact can be made with their knowledge and resulting power.

The movie was filmed over four years in Cairo and follows three teenage boys who are “Zaballeen” which is Arabic for “garbage people”.  The Zaballeen have collected Cairo’s garbage for decades in a way that is far ahead of any of our modern green initiatives.  They recycle an almost unbelievable 80% of the garbage they collect while lifting themselves out of poverty and creating a solution to one of the world’s most pressing crisis.  When the Zaballeen community is suddenly faced with the globalization of its trade, each of the teenage boys is forced to make choices which will impact their future and the survival of the community.

I look forward to watching the entire film and hope you and your family will join me in watching this important documentary which will educate us all on just how important it is to honor tradtions and systems which may seem archaic, but in reality create solutions to some our most important environmental issues.

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  1. I think anyone don't want to collect the garbage, because this is a complicated section, however labor boards and courts have occasionally found both contracting out. Suppose now that the City does manage to get itself through the garbage collection to public tender, and a private company, takes over all of the garbage collection for the whole City.

    Best Regards,

  2. I am looking forward to seeing the outcome of this movie. These people liked and took pride in collecting and recycling.


"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead