“Plastic here. Plastic there. Plastic waste everywhere.”
These lines may become the part of a nursery rhyme resounding within classrooms full of toddlers, if Mumbaikars don’t make conscious efforts to get rid of the 750 metric tonnes of plastic waste we generate every day.
But hope isn’t lost. Yet.
As the country gears up for its annual festival of voluntary giving, DaanUtsav, a Mumbai non-profit is prepping to host what could arguably be India’s biggest Plastic Recyclothon.
With the support of citizen groups, corporates, housing societies, school kids and college youth, city-based NGO ProjectMumbai.org is gearing up to collect over 250 tonnes of plastic in a week from October 2nd to 8th, 2018.
Shishir Joshi, the man behind the initiative, spoke to The Better India about this unique event. He said, “The Mumbai Plastic Recyclothon is not only about voluntary giving, but is a unique manner of contributing to the city’s well-being. The effort not only captures the spirit of the people of Mumbai but also becomes another opportunity for them to reclaim their city.”
Shishir who set up ProjectMumbai is also known for the spectacular initiative ‘Hamara Station Hamari Shaan’ where he co-led 25,000 Mumbaikars in 2016 to beautify 36 Railway stations in the city.
One of the most prominent partners of this Plastic Daan initiative is eminent sculptor Arzan Khambatta. He has joined with ProjectMumbai.org and will be creating a special art installation from the donated and cleaned plastic.
“I have been involved with recycling metal since the past 30 years. If this awareness can become a mass movement, we shall have smaller dumping and garbage yards, and could prevent our planet from getting choked further,” Khambatta told The Better India.
To spread awareness and the message of recycling and reusing plastic, this artwork will be permanently displayed at a prominent public location.
A unique give-back gesture of the Recyclothon is to recycle a portion of the plastic and convert it into 100 benches to be placed in open spaces for senior citizens. Another chunk will be recycled for the creation of waste bins to be put up at key locations across the maximum city.
Volunteers from the beach-cleanup groups in Dadar, Mahim, Worli, and Juhu, have also come on board to conduct plastic clean-up operations on October 2.
While ‘Beach Please’ will be conducting clean-up drives at the Dadar Beach (Chaitya Bhumi Entrance) another portion of the Dadar Beach will be taken care of by the Jay Foundation. ‘Beach Warriors’ led by Chinu Kwatra will cover a 2-km area from Kirti College to RBI quarters (Prabhadevi) and award-winning #MahimBeachCleanUp team led by Indranil Sengupta and Rabia Tewari, will clean the stretch from Hinduja Hospital and Mahim Dargah lane.
Pepsico is supporting the organisation with pick-up vehicles for plastic waste collection, and Dalmia Polypro Industries has extended support as the recycling partner.
Who can participate?
Whether it is a school, college, corporate, housing society, businesses, group or individual, the Recyclothon is open to all Mumbaikars.
All you have to do is:
- Circulate a note of Operation Plastic Recyclothon in your community as soon as you get it or hear about it.
- Create a plastic collection point within your premises.
- Join the DaanUtsav movement and urge people to give away their plastic waste from October 2 to October 8, 2018.
- Collect as much plastic and plastic-waste as your team can contribute and donate.
Do you get a free pick-up from your doorstep?
How do I register and donate plastic?
- To avail of the free pickup at your doorstep, log on to www.projectmumbai.org before September 30, 2018, and register.
- Fill out the form with details of the institution/corporate house/school/college/business/housing society. Add the name of the contact person and address.
- The logistics team will coordinate the rest of the details with you.
What if you miss the September 30 deadline?
For those unable to register before the deadline, there will be special points where they can drop off the plastic.
Additionally, the MCGM will be supporting this cause by providing plastic drop-off points for institutions unable to register before the stipulated date.
(Edited by Shruti Singhal)