Seventh Annual Festival

We are the Zaballeen

08:05 min
Director: Mai Iskander
Producer: Mai Iskander

Winner of the Sustainability Award


More About We are the Zaballeen from Director Mai Iskander

“If there weren’t any garbage collectors, Cairo wouldn’t be clean,” says a teenager named Adham at the opening of We are the Zaballeen. He is one of 60,000 Zaballeen; entrepreneurial garbage collectors who collect and recycle one-third of Cairo’s waste — over 3,000 tons a day. But the Zaballeen finds themselves at a crossroads when the city they keep clean hire foreign multinational disposal companies to collect Cairo’s garbage. We are the Zaballeen follows the Zaballeen’s novel efforts to evolve their trade as Egypt modernizes their garbage disposal system and accompanies them on their journey into the modern world where change is inevitable and necessary.


Seventh Annual Media That Matters Film Festival, economic justice, environment, international
Creative Commons License: Attribution, Non-Commercial, No Derivative Works