BENGALURU : Bengaluru-based Trashonomics, representing India at the Waste Education Awards, won the first prize, beating Greece and USA. They were one of the shortlisted teams for The International Solid Waste Association Young Professionals Group's (ISWA YPG) 'Waste Education Award'."We were awarded at the ISWA World Congress 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. This was part of their global campaign #WhatHappensToMyWaste. We are happy to represent our country. We sent them all our work at Trashonomics, including the illustrative guide for children, our trainer programmes and workshops," said Archana Prasad Kashyap, co-author of Trashonomics.
"We sent a presentation of our impact as well. For example, we have reached out to 20,000 students in government schools across Bengaluru, Mysuru and Delhi. As a part of training of trainers (TOT) programme, we have trained 300 people to in turn train other volunteers and conduct classes at other schools. This competition had waste educators participating from across the globe," Archana added.
Of all the applicants, three were shortlisted. PCAI Junior from Greece and The Six R's from USA, grabbed the second and third place respectively. People could vote for these organisations by sending an e-mail or voting on polls conducting on social media. The five-chapter guide titled Trashonomics, describes itself as a simple guide on solid waste management. It is used to teach children how to manage their waste in the above cities, with Bhubaneswar joining the list recently.
The idea behind Trashonomics is to make children relate to the concept of waste management. They learn to dispose of all kinds of waste - wet, dry, biomedical, electronic - in a responsible manner. The volunteers use hands-on activities in the classrooms such as asking the kids to bring dry waste from their homes and segregate them in the school.
The project is supported by The Anonymous Indian Charitable Trust (TAICT) and has recently received a grant from Millenium Alliance to train 150 government school teachers on the subject, so that they can take it forward without depending on volunteers. Their illustrative guide will soon be available in Tamil and Bengali as well.