Student's initiative to raise green cover

Student's initiative to raise green cover

As monsoon arrived in the City, a group of 40 volunteers engaged themselves in setting up a first-of-its-kind mini forest at St Mary’s School in Dwarka. This effort was a part of Swechha’s annual environmental campaign ‘Monsoon Wooding’ which was initiated to work towards increasing the green cover in Delhi.

Swechha runs this campaign annually during the Monsoon season (July-September) and aims to plant and distribute saplings across communities in Delhi and NCR while spreading awareness about the issue of Delhi’s depleting green cover. However, this year, the campaign was given a new face by the team. 

More than 300 saplings of 32 indigenous species were planted by Swechha’s volunteers along with the school’s Eco Club over an area of 1000 square feet. The plantation was done using a method devised by world renowned Japanese ecologist Akira Miyawaki using organic material such as husk, straw, bamboo, cocopeat and vermicompost. The method included mixing of soil with more than 2000 kgs of biomass, planting, watering, mulching and securing the plants with sticks and ropes. 

Talking about the noble effort, Seema Bali, Vice Principal, St Mary’s School, shared, “Every year, the Eco Club of our school keeps doing something or the other related to the environment. So, this year also we thought to do something unique and hence this idea of sapling plantation. We all know that we don’t have enough green cover left in the City and through this initiative,we want to propagate knowledge on how green cover is essential for Delhi. We also need support from all the stakeholders on this initiative.”
The material along with the saplings was procured by the team from different parts of Delhi. St Mary’s School which already has a botanical garden will be taking care of the forest and will be closely monitored by Swechha.

Utsav Khandelwal, a 3rd year student of College of Vocational Studies, Delhi University, who was part of the cause too shared his experience. “On the first day we did soil enriching and on the second day we planted the saplings. It was such a great experience. I felt that the saplings were my babies and I took care of them all. So, this was an initiative to change the society towards our environment.”

Monsoon Wooding campaign depicts the efforts by the organisation to reclaim the City’s green spaces and was spearheaded by youth volunteers from colleges across Delhi. The volunteers were closely involved in all the stages of the campaign from procuring the material and saplings to carrying out the final plantation. Having created a first-of-its-kind green space in the City, the volunteers plan to take it up at a larger scale in future.

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