Marilao, Philippines

Collect, Certify, Circulate

In Marilao, the Collect, Certify, Circulate programme has effectively diverted plastic waste away from landfills and water bodies, and towards co-processing or recycling, including by roping in women micro-entrepreneurs as waste warriors.

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By involving sari-sari store owners in diverting plastic waste towards recycling or co-processing, this project is helping to bring plastics circularity to the neighbourhoods of Bulacan.


Marilao, Philippines


PCX (Plastic Credit Exchange) Singapore Pte Ltd


- Plastic waste recycled: 996 tonnes
- Emissions reduced by: approx 1,691kg CO2e

Rallying Communities and Recyclers Behind Circularity

In Marilao, Bulacan, a mini waste revolution is underway. Leading it is sari-sari (sundry) store owner Evelyn Garcia – better known as Aling Evelyn – who collects plastic bottles, sachets, and Styrofoam containers from her community, and directs them towards co-processing and recycling. 

She is among over 100 women micro-entrepreneurs who have rallied behind plastic waste collection efforts through the Aling Tindera Waste-to-Cash initiative, which also encourages behavioural change and educates the public about responsible plastic waste management.

This initiative is operated by Friends of HOPE – a partner of PCX Markets which is a fully transparent plastic credit marketplace for audited, traceable plastic waste recovery and responsible processing worldwide. PCX’s marketplace activates an ecosystem of partners who collect, transport and responsibly process plastic waste, which is tracked and verified through the power of blockchain technology, while supporting communities on the ground with programs that improve livelihoods and scale social impact. Through grants, the Alliance has so far supported two projects by PCX, which is on a mission to accelerate the transition to a circular economy and build a future where no plastic ends up in nature.

Evelyn and her fellow eco-warriors, most of whom run small sari-sari shops in their barangay (districts), received infrastructure support through the project to collect plastic waste – container vans, scales, and balers. Since then, they have purchased plastic waste in the community, then baled and consolidated the plastic in containers that are purchased from them and sent to co-processors. This approach removes the full range of plastic waste from the streets and prevents it from leaking into the environment and water bodies, while giving both the Aling Tindera and her community incremental income.

As waste in the environment goes down, the women’s incomes go up – as do opportunities for their families and community members who participate in, or benefit from, their micro-businesses.

To date, the Aling Tindera programme has generated over 10 million Philippine pesos (approximately 178,000 USD) in incremental revenue to the women and their communities, while diverting over 4 million kilograms of plastic from natural environments. In 2023, the average income of each Aling Tindera increased by 48%. Aling Evelyn’s own income has increased by up to 1,600 pesos a week, and it now not only helps cover her family’s basic needs, but has allowed her child to finish school.

During the first phase of the project in 2022, 996 tonnes of unmanaged post-consumer waste was diverted from rivers and streets, five months ahead of schedule, not least because of the efforts of “Alings” like Evelyn. 

By end-August 2023, there were 130 active Aling Tindera sites in Manila, and the initiative is still expanding nationwide.

Institutional partners such as SM Supermalls and SM Cares also collect waste through a separate programme under the same project. This involved individuals dropping off their plastic waste at collection points such as shopping malls and townships. 

A third programme under the project involved working with aggregators, pre-processors, and processors, who recover and process plastic, and ensure it is kept out of the environment. For instance, Greencycle Innovative Solutions collected mixed plastic waste that could not be recycled, and sent it for co-processing as a coal substitute in cement factories.

In May 2023, the Alliance funded a second early impact initiative by PCX involving a tie-up with plastic recycler Royal Rainbow Recycling to collect and recycle 3,000 tonnes of PET waste into raw materials for the overseas textile industry.