For the good of society

For the good of society

The youth today is getting increasingly socially and environmentally conscious- a proof of which are the many youth-run and youth-centric NGOs operating in the City.

A most appropriate example is Sweccha- a youth-focused organisation which is working on cleaning Yamuna, conducting plantation drives, educating underprivileged kids and organising street plays on various social issues throughout Delhi.

Sweccha started in the year 2001 as a young people’s campaign to raise awareness about pollution in Yamuna. Its founder-director Vimlendu Jha, says, “We wanted people to understand that things could be done differently and that the river need not be a dirty, smelly, black body of water we see running through the city. Within a few months, the campaign was  able to mobilise more than 500 volunteers, and together we became one of the strongest voices on the Yamuna. Gradually, we developed a wider range of programmes focusing on different environmental issues and on promoting active citizenship among youth.”

Since then, Sweccha has been engaged in various programmes like CYON- Connecting  Youth  Organisations  Nationwide-  a  collaborative  platform aimed  at  bringing  together all  youth-led and  youth-centred organisations in India, Influence- connecting young people to various NGOs for meaningful internships on environment-related subjects, Brake-Even- Swechha’s  short-term outreach programme for schools and other educational institutions eager to engage on environmental issues, Green the Gap- a recycled textiles project, and their latest Monsoon Wooding- a plantation drive during monsoons.

Vimlendu adds, “Most people think that wisdom comes with age, but we don't have any grey hair yet. Even so, we see ourselves as a strong people's organisation. We definitely have gone beyond just being a campaign and are a recognized organisation today. The Yamuna River and the environment are our immediate concerns, but the larger call is to get young people to participate in the community, and not just be fence sitters. Struggles are many but our spirits are high.” 


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