Manshiyat Nasser, also known as Garbage City, is a Cairo slum whose population is predominantly Coptic Christian.
The population support themselves by collecting the garbage of Cairo’s twenty million residents and then sorting through it, achieving an astonishing high recycling rate. The garbage collectors work as extended family units, or informal businesses, the men tend to be responsible for collecting the garbage while women and children sort through it to find any items which can be resold or recycled such as glass bottles and metal. Some families such as those who recycle aluminium have generated considerable income but most of the residents of this place continue to live in abject poverty and unsanitary conditions.
A visit to this area reveals a completely different, and mostly hidden, side to Cairo, and it is arguably important to see that slums such as these exist, though the experience can be tough on the emotions as you see children sorting through trash, and hear about perpetual eviction threats (not to mention it being tough on the nose!). When you visit this area with us, we will connect you with a highly articulate and thoughtful young residents of Garbage City who will guide you through this experience. Together with your local guide you will also visit the incredible St Saaman’s cave Church which with arena style seating for 15,000 people is the largest church in the Middle East. You will have the chance to discuss the status of the Christian community in contemporary Egypt and even to learn about some of the church’s lesser known activities such as exorcisms! This experience lasts for about two hours.
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