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DIY Masterclass #2 - Vermi-Composting & Managing Kitchen Waste using DIY WORM BINS/TOWERSSwechha in association with the US Dept of State, presents it's second in a series of DIY Masterclasses on 'Vermi-composting & Managing Household and Kitchen Waste.'Vermi-composting simply put, is the process of converting kitchen scraps, leftover greens, dried leaves, paper, or any other form of organic waste, into extremely beneficial fertiliser for the soil, using earthworms. Earth-worms are central to a healthy soil network, and can help create the most beneficial compost in the form of worm castings and vermi-compost.
Here's our step by step DIY Masterclass tutorial on how you can bring in worms to work their magic in your very own backyard, simply by designing your very own worm bin/ tower. Enrich your soil further with these additions to your garden, and promote healthy growth of your greens. It's easy to do, extremely inexpensive, and also makes the most of your kitchen scraps, & leftover greens! Yes, by practising these methods you can also take your first few steps towards leading that 'zero-waste' lifestyle', you've always dreamt of, but didn't know how to achieve!
In this short video we have demonstrated the making of 3 different kinds of vermi-composting units, that you too can develop in your backyards and/or terrace gardens. We have developed these over time, at our farm school in Alwar, an hour away from Gurgaon.
Swechha Farm School/Stay is designed as a Learning Centre – hub for ecological design innovation and incubation, sustainable agriculture, environmental practices, life-skills and personality enhancement programs.The purpose of the Farm is to unleash human creativity and develop solidarity in our world, for planet and its people to thrive peacefully and equitably. We aim at inspiring action and catalyzing communities for a regenerative and sustainable world, one with low impact and high quality lifestyles.
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DIY Masterclass #1 - How to grow your own food - for beginners- with Pragati ChaswalGrow Your Own Food - for beginners is a first in a series of online DIY masterclasses organised by Swechha, in partnership with the US Department of State.
The primary objective of this first masterclass is to encourage and empower every urban dweller to grow their own food, be it on their kitchen window, their small balcony in their apartment, a modest terrace or even their front lawn. The idea is to learn the basics of food growing, and also to understand what it takes to grow food. Each one of us can grow!
The masterclass is a mix of DIY and practical learning, context in agriculture and agrarian situation and understanding sustainability hands-on! The masterclass has been facilitated by Pragati Chaswal, founder at SowGood, and a dear friend of ours. She is an ex advertising professional turned urban farmer, an avid gardener with a ton of experience growing food. Her team runs two beautiful educational farms in Delhi that are both for chidren, and run by children. Team SowGood believes it’s important for us to stay in touch with nature despite our urban lifestyle. Along with the learning farms, she and her team also run Natural Urban Farming programs with schools and RWAs across Delhi.
India's Law & Governance on Environment - Kanchi Kohli in conversation with Vimlendu JhaGreen The Map podcasts are a series on Sustainability and Environment, organised by Swechha India, in association with U.S. Department of State. Vimlendu Jha, one of the leading environmentalists of India and Founder Director of Swechha moderates these podcasts.
Kanchi Kohli works on environment, forest and biodiversity governance in India. Her work explores the links between law, industrialization and environment justice. Her research interests also include the implementation of biodiversity regulations in India. She is presently a Senior Researcher at Centre for Policy Research. Kanchi regularly teaches at universities and law schools in India on subjects related to biodiversity, environment and community development.
A broad landscape understanding of laws around environment and sustainability in India, a brief historical and philosophical perspective.
Whats interesting or exciting about Indian environmental laws?
How do you see India’s environment in last few decades, is it getting better or worse and why?
Where do laws stand in ensuring we have upgraded or degraded vs-a-vis environment in last several decades. Is it law, the execution on the ground, role of judiciary and executive, or all. Is there something missing in our basic understanding of law and governance for envy , in India.
Law and Governance, both, seem or sound very non-common, as in heavy for commoners to understand or indulge in. How do we simplify it.
You have done some phenomenal work in explaining law on the ground and engaging citizens around certain violations of the environmental laws, by the State as well as other stake holders. How has been your experience and if you have certain learnings to share.
Should our bureaucrats and politicians be forced to take mandatory courses on law and governance vis-a-vis environment, as most often we have seen them as biggest violators on the ground.
Whats the future of environmental laws in India, especially in the light of EIA draft 2020.
Green The Map Podcast Series #1 - 'Clean Yamuna - A road map' - In conversation with Manoj MishraWe are super excited to finally launch our 'Green The Map' podcast series in partnership with U.S. Embassy India and American Center New Delhi. This monthly podcast series aims at highlighting issues related to climate change, sustainability, and building a more resilient community. To ‘reimagine and rebuild our world’, through ‘relevant and practical’ solutions that meet real needs of the people (individuals, families, neighborhoods and communities).
Our first expert is Mr. Manoj Mishra, from Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan, in conversation with our founder Vimlendu Jha.
Mr. Mishra is a retired forest officer who serves as the convener of the Yamuna Jiye Abhiyan, formed in 2007. This endevaour was developed as a result of growing levels of ignorance and increasing encrorachment of the floodplains of river Yamuna. Since then, the YJA has served as an advocacy based campaign, pioneering efforts to revive River Yamuna, protecting and preserving its floodbanks. Over the past decade, The YJA along with Mr. Mishra have actively worked on providing trainings, workshops, seminars, as well as on developing volumes of research studies on river Yamuna, to further their cause.
Listen in to Mr. Manoj Mishra, in conversation with Vimlendu, to learn more about building a roadmap toward a clean Yamuna.
CineGreen Change-Makers One Minute Films10 partner schools were selected and were engaged in a series of extremely
engaging and interesting film making workshops. These hands on workshops stretched across 2 days and focussed on theoretical and practical knowledge behind the working of the camera and process of filmmaking. The 10 one minute films represented the voice and stories
of children and aimed to inspire other students and stakeholders on themes covered. The films were fictional in nature and were driven by voice narratives or ideas discussed during the workshops that the children came up with.
Each of the students participated in the production of a professional film along with film professionals. The two day workshops covered concepts relating to film making theory, storyboarding, storytelling, hands-on training, camera, sound and onset production calls. On Day 2 (the day of shooting), the students themselves became the crew and actors of the films.
Themes such as sustainable fashion, water conservation, urban green spaces, air pollution, upcycling and plastic pollution were addressed in the making of each of these one minute films. A total of over 200 young students were directly engaged in the entire process led by team P se Picture!
A mix of 10 private and public schools were selected to be engaged in these workshops. These were the 10 participating schools :
1. St. James Convent, Shalimar Garden
2. New Era Public School, Dwarka
3. Sarvodaya Sr. Secondary School, Munirka
4. Bharti Public School, Mayur Vihar
5. Venkateshwara International School, Dwarka
6. Sarvodaya Co-ed Govt School, Masjid Moth
7. Sarvodaya Kanya Vidyalaya, Dhaka
8. Govt. Boys Sr. Secondary School, JJ Colony Wazirpur
9. The Foundation School, Sadiq Nagar
10. Sarvodaya Co-ed School, ZP Block Pitampura
Webinar on Urban Gardening and Upcycling with Vivekanand School
CineGreen Journey FilmCineGreen is an initiative launched by American Express, as part of their corporate social responsibility, in association with PVR NEST, Samhita and Swechha.
A year long school environment education initiative executed by Swechha across 70 schools in Delhi/NCR, focused on facilitating a culture of environmental engagement and responsible civic action for young people through learning, exposure and strategic opportunities. CineGreen promoted engagement with targeted audiences and created awareness and impact on their immediate environment with special focus on Air Pollution, Water Conservation and Urban Green Spaces.
70 schools. 70,000 young students. 10 change-making films. 10 green action fellowships .
Re-live the journey of CineGreen!
Webinar - Serious Sustainability Practices (Praxis Awareness Level 1)Serious Sustainability Practices - Praxis Awareness - Level 0.1 was organised under the aegis of the US Embassy and ably coordinated by Swechha, took place between 11am and 1.45 pm on 12.07.2020.
The program was broken into three clear instructional modules with in-built interactions, engagement exercises and tool- based input sharing with the participants.
The first module ‘Preparing for disruptions: Focusing on SDGs - Challenges , Complexities and Inter-relationships’, delivered by US State Department (IVLP) alumna Sanjukta Mukherjee dealt with creating a virtual map for the
participants at the conceptual level, where the terrain included precepts of sustainability, the UN Sustainable Development Goals and their interpretations, general concepts of businesses and ecology alignment to the overall ethos and bottom-lines of sustainability with a distinct synergistic story boarding of the emergent” new normal” apropos sustainable development in the ongoing scenario and the post pandemic world. It included concepts of business continuity, economic and disaster resilience, preparedness and alignment of perceptual positions to make
the participants’ personal businesses vis a vis eco systems empowered by readiness. There were a number of questions including one from a senior correspondent from the Trade Fair Times as to what she considered the most challenging aspect of propagating the sustainable business opportunities which the facilitator answered satisfactorily.
The next session, titled Sustainable Production & Processes - Enterprise Score Card & dealt with a more operational approach where the facilitator Satrajit Sanyal, who is a Lead Assessor for Sustainability Assurance and implementer of the Balanced Scorecard and an alumnus of The American National Standard Institute took the participants through the two different frameworks of sustainability assurance and score-carding and through a very short presentation explained to them the how these two frameworks could be synthesised to create an operational measuring tool for evaluating sustainability in both the social and professional contexts. The session ended with a small exercise which involved the participants and tooled them to measure emergent positive practices in a constrained scenario like the present pandemic. There were queries by a senior development practitioner and former government official, an International legal consultant and regional registrar for India’s apex body in the field of institutional arbitration and a recently returned post-doctoral fellow from California University. Each of these queries were satisfactorily solved by the guidance and facilitation of Mr Sanyal who helped these participants come to their own solutions by using the tools he had been discussing.
The last session, An Overview of The Growing Market And Increased Demand and Green Business Case Studies’, was a technical session which was delivered by Prof.Judhajit Sanyal who is an academic, scholar and researcher in the fields of Applied information Engineering and Advanced Environmental Practices, and dealt with the opportunities and emerging trends- pre, during & post COVID 19- in the field of sustainable and environmentally resilient business practices and areas, mapping it to the urgent need of recognising and predicting constraints, responsibly creating
redressal mechanisms and systems for the same, taking the incumbents step by step through UN, World Bank and other reports and live data vis a vis predictive analytic forecasts regarding the future of green business.
There were queries from several of the incumbents which were effectively addressed by Mr Sanyal and some queries which were beyond the permissible time frame were promised responses to, offline.
The program due to the enthusiastic response of the participants and the many queries that they raised to the facilitators had to be extended to a further 15 minutes than the originally declared duration. It ended on a very
positive note where the incumbents seemed interested to take part in future events which offered learning on similar lines. This seemed like a measure of efficacy of the program and could be considered as a point of departure for the way ahead.
Virtual Panel Discussion - LGBTQIA+ Leadership in times of Covid 19A conversation on LGBTQIA+ Leadership in Times of COVID-19 with Anish Gawande, Founder of The Pink List; Rituparna Borah, Co-Founder of Nazariya QFRG; and Grace Banu, Founder of Trans Rights Now Collective The panel will be moderated by Rafiul Alom Rahman, Founder of The Queer Muslim Project
The panel discussed alternative ways of advocacy and organising in times of crisis. It also highlighted some of the existing relief efforts and support initiatives undertaken by the LGBTQIA+ community to combat COVID-19. This event was part of an online #CovidKindness campaign run by The Queer Muslim Project and Ms.Wafa Hamid - a US Embassy PAS Exchange Programs Alumni and one of the recipients of the US Embassy Alumni Micro Grants Competition, in association with the U.S. Embassy India, alumni of US government exchange programs & Swechha.
The virtual event took place on Tuesday, 28 April at 6 PM IST.
About the speakers:
Anish Gawande is a writer and translator. He is the director of the Dara Shikoh Fellowship and the co-founder of The Pink List. Gawande graduated with a degree in comparative literature and society from Columbia University and is currently a Rhodes Scholar pursuing a degree in intellectual history at Oxford University.
Rituparna Borah, Nazariya, Co-Director and Co-Founder: Rituparna is a queer feminist activist working on issues gender and sexuality for almost 15 years. Her expertise lies in planning and conducting training sessions on sexuality with organisations, collectives, rural communities, gender trainers, lawyers, students and government officials.
Grace Banu is a Dalit Transgender activist and writer from Tamil Nadu. Founder/Director of Trans Rights Now Collective, she's actively involved in relief work for transgender communities in rural and urban Tamil Nadu.
Rafiul Alom Rahman is the Founder of The Queer Muslim Project. He currently represents India on the Beijing+25 Global Youth Task Force set up by UN Women to strengthen gender-responsive action and to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals. Nominated as a “Young Change-maker” by The Hindu Business Line in 2018, Rafiul brings with him a decade of experience in gender and sexuality rights organising.
CineGreen Virtual Grand Finale70 schools, 70,000 students. CineGreen is a schools program initiative in association with American Express and in partnership with PVR NEST, Samhita and Swechha. Join our virtual grand finale celebrations here!
Jijivisha- A River StrugglesPowered by Restream https://restream.io/
Webinar on Importance of Butterflies in our Ecosystem with Vivekanand SchoolTo keep our students engaged during times of Covid-19 and virtual learning, we at Swechha have been organizing Virtual Sessions and webinars on several environmental themes.
Watch our schools program team members Ashim and Vrinda facilitating this session with Vivekanand School, Delhi on 'Importance of Butterflies in our Ecosystem and how we can create a safe habitat for them in our own surrounding by learning more about the native species of host and nectar plants, food, shelter and other special needs for butterflies in our ecosystem.