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TCS is associated with Paryavaran Mitra for this event.
India is growing at a fast pace with its own positive and negative externalities. Littered roads are undoubtedly one of the biggest challenge probably in all developing nation. Rag-picker is a term normally used for anyone collecting waste from the roadside working in an informal setup. In Ahmedabad, India, 30000 women go out every day in different parts of the city, walk 8-10kms, bend atleast 1000times to collect 15-20kgs of recyclables. By virtue of their work, they ensure 600,000kgs of recyclables reach to recycling unit which otherwise would have landed at dumpsite contaminating the environment for ages. As these women are doing a phenomenal service for the society by keeping it Clean & Green and for the mother earth, we proudly refer them as Paryavaran Mitra.
When these women go for collection, they often suffer injuries due to the lack of safety equipment. Since they walk long distances with heavy load on their shoulder and head, most of them suffer with severe joint pains. As they have been closely working with waste, they end up having skin diseases and respiratory problems.
But sadly, in-spite of their phenomenal service, these lovely souls are exploited at every front of their life. So, with a vision of bringing holistic improvements in the life of these women, idea of Paryavaran MItra was conceived in 2014 by Manav Sadhna, an NGO based in Gandhi Ashram with the support of Tarsadia Foundation.
After 5years of continuous hard work and learning, today the model of Paryavaran Mitra is complete. Now, the women are coming to our waste management centre and are going for door to door segregated waste collection with proper uniform and ID. Once they are back, recyclable waste is further sorted at finer level, baled or grinded and sent for recycling whereas bio-degradable waste are composted. This whole concept is supported by United Nations Development Program and Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd.
The unique aspect of this model is that right from collection to management to processing, everything happens in-house and these sisters are the ones running the whole show. So, they no longer have to go early morning and work in an unsafe and unhygienic environment without respect and dignity.
We are proud to share that it is India’s model focused on women empowerment where Solid waste management is used as a tool and the whole model is by the women, of the women and by the women in actual practice on ground.
The journey of these women, their incredible service to society and mother earth, their journey and deeper complexities must be shared to the larger audience. With this intent, a team of Paryavaran Mitra are here in United Kingdom conducting one day workshop on social entrepreneurship keeping Paryavaran Mitra as the focus incorporating Sustainable Development Goals of United Nations.
Idea is to inspire and engage with the students of different universities in a constructive manner and give them a glimpse of the journey of a social entrepreneur intriguing a notion of empathy for billions of people who are living in not so privileged lifestyle thereby encouraging them to use the knowledge gained in the universities in shaping our society towards equality. Alongside, internships, volunteering opportunities, collaboration on research papers, case studies are some immediate outcomes of the workshops.
In the current trip, these workshops have been scheduled at Imperial,—–. So, we invite you all to connect with us, visit us to know more about these women and help us spread awareness of these souls and our model of service.
You can reach out to us at email@example.com for more information.