“Landfill Harvest” is a short documentary we self-funded and produced with an international crew in Cebu, Philippines, while visiting Mandaue Landfill with some charity workers who were helping the families that live there.
Mandaue Landfill was like nothing we had ever seen; a twelve acre stretch of a giant city’s waste, delivered at a rate of 700 cubic metres per day from the nearby sprawl of Cebu, Mandaue and Lapu-Lapu City. Unbelievably this was home (at the time of filming) to over fifty families. These were the people at the very bottom of their society; the lowest of the low, scratching a living selling anything they could find by ‘harvesting’ the landfill. We were told they earned around 47 pesos (97 cents) per day. But material wealth is not the only kind of riches, and where there is hope and resourcefulness there is always the chance of a better life. After seeing how inventive the families were with what simple things they could find amongst what the rest of the city was throwing away, we decided to make this short film to remind ourselves and our audience to be thankful for what we have.