I have successfully made it to Delhi and I started work right away! I arrived in the middle of the night and then worked the following day and all through the weekend because Chintan was very busy for World Environment Day, which meant that I was thrown right into the action.
Chintan’s main event occurred at a luxury mall about 45min from the office, and involved asking patrons to sign pledges on leaf stickers to support the environment. After they were signed, the leaves were placed onto two baron trees. By the end of the three days both trees were full of pledges!
This event was purely for outreach and did not specifically involve Chintan’s work with waste-picker communities. Despite the decent amount of patron participation, it was clear that both the staff and the patrons were split on the effectiveness of such an event. I was asked by one man if “I thought I was making a difference” and another asked me “Do you really think people will follow this pledge? What is the point?” While others were overjoyed to take a pledge and took pictures with the trees.
These skeptics echoed my own interpretation of event, and brought up important questions about how to best raise awareness for environmental issues. What do you think, do outreach events such as this really work?
Despite my skepticism the pledge signing was a huge success! People seemed to love the activity of placing a leaf on the tree to make it come alive, and the basil planting was a huge hit. Below is a short film about my three days at the mall that includes some great pictures and interviews. Enjoy!
Posted By Clara Kollm
Posted Jun 7th, 2011