”The world sends us garbage…. We send back music”

We start this blog with the idea of making sustainable development part of our lives, we believe in a sustainable world and we strongly believe that we can change the current way of doing things. We believe in people and, every time I found more and more inspirational stories of people working with -and for- people. People who also believe in a better world.

”Creative and simple solutions can bring social powerful transformation to the poorest communities”

Landfill Harmonic

Landfill Harmonic is definitely one of the best stories I have heard. These two guys in the picture below (Flavio Chavez and Nicolás Gómez”Cola”) had the idea of making musical instruments for the children of Cateura. Cateura is the city’s trash dump of the capital city of Paraguay, Asuncion; one of the poorest slums of Latin America. Seeing the low, and almost null resources, to buy or build these intruments; they decided to take advantage of the trash they get and make recicled musical instruments.

”A few years ago, one of the garbage pickers, “Cola”, an untutored genius of the slum, got together with local musician Favio Chávez to make instruments for the children of the slum. There was no money for real instruments so together they started to make instruments from trash – violins and cellos from oil drums, flutes from water pipes and spoons, guitars from packing crates.” Landfill Harmonic

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 3.27.45 PMNicolás Gómez, garbage picker and luthier of recycled instruments (Left side) and Favio Chávez, Teacher, mentor and Director of The Recycled Orchestra of Cateura (Right side) Landfill Harmonic

The first instrument they built was a violin; then they started builing other intruments to encourage kids from Cateura and surrounding areas to play music. Kids loved it and what started with the idea of making intruments evolved into the construction of an orchestra. Wooden pallets, pain cans, oil thin cans, forks and coins are some of the materials used to built the instruments for the orchestra.

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 2.44.32 PMLandfill Harmonic

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 2.44.15 PMLandfill Harmonic

The orchestra has been also an alternative to the life the kids usually have in the slum. The orchestra keeps kids and teenagers busy and motivated. The kids and teenagers started only with the idea of learning how to play and instrument but now they have had the opportunity to share their story and to share their music to the world. They have perfomanced in other countries and have participated in events such as Rio+20 and TEDx Amsterdam. They are also preparing a tour in 2014.

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 2.46.59 PMLandfill Harmonic

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 2.46.41 PM Landfill Harmonic

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 3.26.59 PMLandfill Harmonic

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 2.43.23 PMLandfill Harmonic

Check also these two videos, very inspirational…

TEDx Talks Amsterdam

Landfill Harmonic


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s