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IFS Officer Inspires Kids in 68 Villages to Give up Slingshots, Protect Birds

Indian Forest Service officer Anand Reddy’s viral twitter thread shares how positive reinforcement has encouraged children to give up slingshots and protect birds in Nashik.

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In the villages surrounding Nashik, it is common to see children playing with slingshots. They use these to hurl stones at innocent birds that fly or chirp around them. It is not because they want to hurt or hunt the bird but because it is considered to be a game among the kids.

To address this problem, Indian Forest Service officer Anand Reddy, took to Twitter and raised a simple question — Will you punish the kid for doing so?

Though this can lead to empty and silent forests, punishing the child is not the solution. It is easy for children to make these slingshots and within one day they will have a new one.
So this is what the IFS Officer suggests instead:

Talk to the child
Explain how painful this is for the bird.
Make them promise not to hurt a bird again.
Finally, request them to voluntarily surrender their slingshot.

A month ago on World Environment Day, he started the initiative — ‘Galor Samarpan Abhiyan’, to encourage kids to voluntarily surrender their slingshots. Upon hearing the purpose of the initiative, green warriors assigned to villages worked day and night, even during the rains, to reach out to children.

Today, it has turned into a movement with more than 590 slingshots surrendered by children across 68 villages.

Now, children themselves are taking this movement ahead to spread awareness among others in their village.

Anand writes, “Change a child, you’ll change a generation.”

Anand concludes by saying, “Do not seize it [the slingshot] but try to win his heart through positive reinforcements. Give him a colouring book, a pen, or chocolates and ask him to do away with the practice. He might not do it today, but eventually he will (sic).”

Edited by Yoshita Rao

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