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CHALLENGES IN EDUCATION FACED BY A DEVELOPING NATION

Education, as we all know, is an important tool to the human resource development and empowerment in the stages of growth of a nation. Increased access to education can improve the overall health and longevity of the society, grow economies and even combat climatic changes. Yet in many developing countries, children’s access to education is limited by numerous factors.

Following are some of the problems which each and every developing country faces –

 

  • A lack of funding for education
  • Having no teacher, or having an untrained teacher
  • No classroom or proper infrastructure
  • A lack of learning materials and other tools
  • Living in a country in conflict or at risk of conflict
  • Poverty
  • Various discrimination and crimes against children
  • Distance from home to school
  • Hunger and poor nutrition
  • The expense of education
  • Being the ‘wrong’ gender
  • The exclusion of children with disabilities

 

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights makes clear that every child has the right to a free basic education, so that poverty and lack of money should not be a barrier to schooling. In many developing countries, over the last decades governments have announced the abolition of school fees and as a result, seen remarkable increase in the number of children going to school.

 

According to a UN report India has made significant progress in ensuring access to education through Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (Education for All) and the implementation of RTE (Right to Compulsory and Free Education ). There is near universal enrollment at the primary school level. But the challenge still remains because around one third of children drop out before even completing the full cycle of education.

 

There are many government, non-government and private organizations which are working towards this cause. But there are many challenges since India is a developing economy with the second largest population in the world which hinders the speed of development.

 

Smile Foundation is also one such NGO which has introduced various education programmes for underprivileged boys and girls throughout the country. It covers primary, secondary as well as senior secondary levels of schooling. To know more, visit www.smilefoundationindia.org/me

Education is both the means as well as the end to a better life. As quoted by Nelson Mandela –

‘Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.’

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Factoring Process Indicators in Programme Evaluations: Rationale and the Way Forward

ealthy people are vital to economic and social development. The last decade has witnessed multidimensional changes in health and more so in reproductive health in India. Although India has made significant progress in improving the health of its population, fertility rates, HIV and infectious disease burden and child survival, it still mandates for continued investment to expand programmes, identify new models for intervention, and develop approaches to ensure sustainability. Policy and programme environment too has undergone a change.

 

India launched the National Family Planning Programme in 1951 with the demographic objective of a stable population at a level consistent with the requirements of national economy. Since then and through the 12 five-year plans, the programme has undergone dramatic changes from family planning to family welfare services to a Target Free Approach which has been restructured as Community Needs Assessment Approach in Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child and Adolescent Health (RMNCH+A)- a client oriented and client driven programme under National Health Mission (NHM).

 

The catalyst for these remarkable changes in 1990s has been the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) held in Cairo in September 1994. The ICPD approach is strongly reflected in India’s population and RCH programme, which has made available improved services, involves women and lays direct emphasis on community planning.

 

Promotion of maternal and child health has been one of the most important objectives of the Family Welfare Programme in India. The Government of India took steps to strengthen maternal and child health services as early as the First and Second Five-Year Plans (1951–56 and 1956-61). As part of the Minimum Needs Programme initiated during the Fifth Five-Year Plan (1974–79), maternal health, child health, and nutrition services were integrated with family planning services. The primary aim at that time was to provide at least a minimum level of public health services to pregnant women, lactating mothers, and preschool children.

 

In 1992–93, the Child Survival and Safe Motherhood Programme continued the process of integration by bringing together several key child survival interventions with safe motherhood and family planning activities. In 1996, safe motherhood and child health services were incorporated into the Reproductive and Child Health Programme. This new programme seeks to integrate maternal health, child health, and fertility regulation interventions with reproductive health programmes for both women and men. With regard to maternal and reproductive health, the important elements of the programme include:

 

Provision of antenatal care, including at least three antenatal care visits, iron prophylaxis for pregnant and lactating mothers, two doses of tetanus toxoid vaccine, detection and treatment of anemia in mothers, and management and referral of high-risk pregnancies

Encouragement of institutional deliveries or home deliveries assisted by trained health personnel

Provision of postnatal care, including at least three postnatal visits

Identification and management of reproductive tract and sexually transmitted infections

 

Globally many countries pursue the result orientation toward any development initiative, be it Public Health, Education, Agriculture, Livelihood etc. As part of strengthening this result or outcome orientated initiative the countries develop monitoring and evaluation system focusing primarily on outcome or performance indicators.

 

In theory the indicators are used as tools for assessing the efficiency, effectiveness, reliability and completeness of programme implementation. The programme or scheme assessment should actually establish a coordinated balance between all the critical indicators which encompass both process as well outcome indicators. Where as in practice the assessment focuses largely on the outcome indicators, the outcome indicators measure the performance of the programme against certain standards which is eventually spread over a period of time. The process indicators focus on guidelines which are being followed, the availability and accessibility of the programme. They also focus on the potential risk involved and the attributes which finally influence the outcome indicators.

 

The monitoring and evaluation framework which have been developed under NHM have the indicators which are result oriented as in output or outcome oriented. For instance, the total number of Cheranjeevi Yojana and JSY beneficiaries in Gujarat, for the year 2010- 11 were 132470 and 292785, respectively were 23251 and 63478 beneficiaries less, respectively, from the preceding year 2009-10 (155721- Chiranjeevi Yojana and 356263 JSY) (Source- State MIS 2011), although the institutional delivery had been ever increasing. So, the concern is as to why was the number of beneficiaries dropping down while on the other hand as per NFHS 3 the IMR of Gujarat declined to 49.7 per 1000 live births and 50 per 1000 live births as per SRS 2009 and MMR to 160 per 1,00,000 live births as per SRS 2004-2006. Is it the quality of care being provided in the hospitals which is refraining the masses to go to hospitals? Also, our state MIS focuses primarily on the ultimate outcome indicators.

 

Till date, there has been no framework to measure any of the process indicators for, say, conducting the normal delivery for instance. The clinicians by and large conduct the delivery process (history taking, examination included) as per their respective experiences over the years. There is no specific framework to monitor the processes which are being followed while implementing any of these schemes. The challenges while developing monitoring framework for the process indicators are the indicators need to have a measurable numerator and denominator so that the indicators could be quantified and measured as the outcome indicators. Readiness (infrastructure supplies and trained human resources) of the health facilities at all level has shown significant improvement which is an important requisite for providing quality services. The process component which actually address to the quality of delivering services has also shown improvement but at a lot more initiative from district health management is required. It is primarily because it demands behavioral change, adherence to clinical standards and adoption of good practices. To accelerate the improvement in the processes, supportive supervision need to be strengthened and more attention should be given to review the process part.

 

To read about Smile Foundation’s health interventions, please visit

https://www.smilefoundationindia.org/smile_on_wheels.html

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Gender Equality with Women Empowerment

According to the World Bank:

Empowerment is the process of increasing the capacity of individuals or groups to make choices and to transform those choices into desired actions and outcomes.

 

Therefore, we can describe women empowerment as to give the authority or the power to women.  Women Empowerment is recognition of women’s basic human right and creating an environment where they are treated as equal to men in every aspect (economically, politically, socially and individually).

 

According to Jim Kim, The president of World Bank also believes that countries pay a big prize by failing to realize the potential of women. And ending gender equality will make so much sense in our society as well as economy. Currently women account for 38% or even less in some parts of the world versus 62% of men. If women earned as much as men they would add an additional $160 trillion in human capital worldwide if only we bridge the gap and empower them.

 

The crime and violence against women is on rise worldwide and it hampers the development tremendously. Many organizations and NGO’s are working worldwide towards this cause.

 

Smile Foundation, an NGO based in New Delhi with its presence in 25 other Indian state has taken few initiatives empowering young girls and women.

 

Mission Education is one such initiative in which the underprivileged children are provided with basic level education and healthcare. The 50% of the children benefitted are girls and it is a national level programme.

 

Healthcare is another initiative in which free medical services are provided mostly to the Urban slum dwellers, rural areas where proper healthcare facilities are not available and other underprivileged.  Smile on Wheels programme is another initiative in which mobile healthcare in urban slums and remote rural areas and it has provided health services to more than 10 lakh children and families.

 

According to statistics 66% of the total beneficiaries are women and girls.

 

Another initiative taken by smile to empower the underprivileged youth is Smile Twin E- learning Programme STeP. In this programme the underprivileged youth is trained in English, computer, soft skills and other required skills. Till now more than 22,000 youths are trained and more than 14,000 have been placed in more than 150 brands across different projects in India. In this programme also 52% of the beneficiaries were girls.

 

Swabhiman i.e.  Self-respect in English in another initiative which identifies adolescent girls and women and develops them into Change Agents, who in turn actively contribute to the community mobilization process.

 

Till now Swabhiman has empowered and successfully made a difference to the lives of over 500,000 women and girl children.

 

Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru said, “To awaken the people, it is the women who must be awakened. Once she is on the move, the family moves, the village moves, the nation moves”.

 

Therefore empowering women and rebuilding the society would take the nation on a path of greater development.

 

To know more about the projects in Smile Foundation for the empowerment of women please visit https://www.smilefoundationindia.org/swabhiman.html

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Improvising Education System in Rural India

The Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) shows that even though the number of students attending schools in rural areas of India is rising, more than half of the students in fifth grade are unable to read a second grade text book and are not able to solve even simple mathematical problems. It is time that we recognize not just literacy, but also quality education and applied knowledge as a basic need and fundamental right of every child.

 

A sizeable segment of our population continues to reside in the villages. However, access to quality education in rural India is still very limited. Efforts have been made to improve the scenario, but the progress has been slow and unevenly spread across the country. Remote, faraway and cut-off villages with little or no administrative interest are usually the last to avail of amenities – be it private or public.

 

Lack of well-trained teachers and a highly skewed student teacher ratio are major drawbacks that abate the advancement of the education system in rural India. Most rural areas have primary schools that provide free of cost education, but due to lack of committed teachers, we are not able to establish a firm foundation and love of learning in the younger children, because of which they lose interest in continuing further studies. The quality of education should be high right from the start which needs to be laid down at the primary level itself. This will become a factor which can turn India into a strong nation.

 

Another problem is the absence of middle and senior secondary level education institutions in the villages. The children often have to travel long distances amid difficult terrains – traverse hills, forests, and deserts to reach the nearest school, which serves as a deterrent for both the children and their parents. It is imperative to sensitize parents and help them understand the importance of education and how it can end the vicious cycle of poverty and be the beginning of a dignified and empowered future for their children and also for the whole family. Instead of looking at their children as extra hands at work in the farms or forests, they should be encouraged to send their children to school and get a proper education. Emphasis should be paid on the education on girls, and doing away with regressive customs such as child marriage.

 

The traditional teaching methods also need to be revised to enhance engagement and interest of the children in the classroom and beyond. Simple things like relating the textbooks to the children’s cultural values can pique the curiosity of the kids, making them attentive and responsive. The school curriculum should involve extracurricular activities and fun-learning exercises to improve the morale of the students. The reasons for drop outs and low attendance should be investigated in spite of free education. This becomes a major hurdle on the way to progress. Improvements should be made in the school infrastructure, and teachers should be given performance based incentives as motivation to bring out their best in the classrooms.

 

There is a difference between children in urban and rural areas, not in terms of potential, but their learning environment, skills, cognitive abilities, availability of infrastructure, and access to proper facilities. With proper administration and assessment, we can achieve positive results and ensure that education in rural India is at level with that in urban India, and becomes a model system that is emulated by the world.

 

To Know about our education program please log in to https://www.smilefoundationindia.org/education.html

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Decentralizing health management for meeting local health needs

With growing population and advancement in the medical technology and increasing expectation of people for quality health care, it has now become imperative to establish a system to render accessible and effective healthcare services.

 

Addressing this need, the National Health Mission (NHM), formerly known as National Rural Health Mission (NRHM-2005-2012) is a major undertaking by the Government to honor its commitments under the common minimal programme. NHM is a strategic framework to implement the National Health Policy 2002 with its key guidelines including equity, decentralization, involving Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) and local bodies in owning primary health care management, and strengthening of primary health care institutions.

 

Upgradation of CHCs (Community Health Centres) to FRUs (First Referral Units) and establishment of 24X7 PHCs have been some major strategic interventions under NRM, to provide sustainable quality care with accountability and people’s participation, along with total transparency. However, there is a general apprehension that this may not be possible unless a system is evolved for ensuring a level of permanency and sustainability.

 

To resolve this, the decentralization of health management can play a pivotal role in ensuring a quick turnaround in the decision making for procurement of logistics, improving infrastructure etc. This requires strengthening of District Programme Management Unit (DPMU) – functioning under the guidance of District Health Society (DHS) led by Chief Medical Officer (CMO) with the support of District Health Manager (DPM). In principle, DPM is responsible for setting-up and operationalizing the DHS.

 

Although the DPMU has vertical and horizontal linkages with the health functionaries, there are some underlined challenges. To make a decentralized system functional, we need to have clear guidelines with details of roles and responsibilities along with the details of the compliances one has to adhere to. Since the programme management is ever evolving and dynamic, hence the guidelines need to reviewed and adapted as per the changing need of the programmes. The ambiguity in the guidelines and “static” or adopting ad-hoc processes to address the issues, hinder the decision making process. Hence, to keep the essence of the decentralization intact, it is important to have clarity in guidelines especially at the level of DPM, who manages the DPMU. This will result in crystallizing the goals of programmes at local level and the role of people involved in the overall programme.

 

The DPM should be authorized to make some critical estimations and decisions at DPMU level. For instance, to ensure that individuals have the ability to choose, obtain and use quality contraceptives/ family planning method, whenever they need them, requires addressing a number of factors. The DPM at district level must be equipped to estimate the supply and demand of different contraceptives and should also gauge the changes in the demand over time. In addition to estimating the demand, it is important to ensure the procurement of required equipments and consume them in the required time frame. Since the DPM is a person who brings on board the techno-managerial skills, hence the authority should be with him/ her make critical decisions in this regard.

 

Currently, the procurement and logistics system is built up in a manner, where the emphasis is on ensuring uninterrupted equipments, logistics, medicines, consumables such as condoms, OCPs, IUCD, supply at the facility level with the district warehouse as the hub. This procurement system allows huge cost savings and ensures very good quality and safety in the procurement process. The rate contracting done at the state level to gain economies of scale and ensure quality and safety of the required commodities can be done centrally. 

 

In addition to this, the Rogi Kalyan Samiti (RKS) can play an important role in raising the awareness of decision makers about the benefits of creating a system to procure the contraceptive commodities at the health facility level, without compromising on quality standards, so as to ensure that there is no stock-out, ever, of these. This decentralized system, if strengthened further, will also ensure the availability, repair and replacement of the essential equipments required to provide any family panning service.

 

In principle, decentralizing the procurement process of family planning health sector leads to a number of benefits. For one, local governments become more responsive to local priorities than central governments are. Because more authority rests at the local level, local decision makers are given freedom to identify family planning priorities based on local needs. Furthermore, the community members can also hold local decision makers more accountable to ensure that health issues are resolved. With priorities identified at the local level, funding/ resource allocation and the procurement process, even with to a limited extent should also be decentralized in a way that best responds to local priorities.

 

(Under its Swabhiman programme, Smile Foundation works closely with communities, local authorities, health workers and institutions to ensure that women and their families are aware of and have access to primary healthcare services.

 

To know more, visit: https://www.smilefoundationindia.org/swabhiman.html)

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The Earth is all we have in common

The importance of Earth Day lies in the scope of preserving humanity. The improvement that we have in our life now using fossil fuels are slowly melting the ice in the glaciers and instigating global warming at an accelerated rate. That is why it is necessary to use renewable energy and stored energy. By moving away from harmful bio products, the environment can be restored to its natural order.

 

We appreciate the uniqueness of the planet Earth with its immense biodiversity through Earth Day. On this day we come forward to ensure that various activities are supervised to understand and protect our biodiversity and also to save our nature – plants, animals and environment.

 

We dedicate this day to increase awareness about the issues and the problems that our planet Earth is facing. Today, millions of people participate in activities in Earth Day to maintain and safeguard our nature making it the largest civic observance in the world. Various acts and policies such as Clear Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act and many others are sanctioned in this unique event.

 

People have been witnessing the increased global warming and changing weather patterns, shortage of food and increase in fuel prices which is why Earth Day has gained significance in the past. Acknowledging the importance of our planet is very much needed which makes people aware about the contemporary environment issues such as global warming, depleting resources etc. Even adults and kids are conscious about the strategies and tactics which can be adopted by them in day-to-day life to ensure cleaner and sustainable environment.

 

Various approach have been bought forward to notice about recycling, reduce air pollution, keeping clean environment, save water, reduce toxins in air, protect and love animals who inhabit the earth. There are small ideas which can create a huge impact such as – planting a tree, switching off light when not in use, use recyclable bags for grocery shopping etc.

 

Now even companies are getting engaged and contributing in their part to save this planet from pollution and degradation. They are asking their employees to make use of public transportation, car pooling to reduce pollution, switching off AC when not in use, engage in tele or video conferencing, using of CFL Lights and bulbs, using renewable source to generate power etc.

 

Companies have started manufacturing and selling hybrid vehicles which run on electricity and batteries that do not make use of petrol or diesel to run. This new technologies are coming in par the fuel prices making these cars and vehicles more efficient to use.

 

If we start implementing in some of these and bring changes in our behaviour towards Mother Earth, then we would be able to make our planet a much better place to live in – also for the future generations.

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Impact Assessment: Smile Twin e-Learning Programme – Smile Foundation’s Livelihood initiative

Smile Twin e-Learning Programme (STeP) works for the marginalised youth, helping them attain a decent employment by providing vocational education and training. Targeting girls and boys between the age group of 18 and 25 years, the programme strives to empower them through market-oriented skill training, along with placement support in the end. In addition to enhancing the youth’s prospects of employment in the fast expanding retail and service sector, the programme aims at making them confident and independent to lead dignified lives.

 

Impact of the programme in 2017:

STeP spread its reach in 12 cities across 9 states including Delhi, Haryana, UP, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. In total, 9468 youth were trained during the year.

 

The capability, skills, and learning levels of a student can be judged through regular assessments. This not only helps teachers to improve their modes of teaching but also helps students to understand their weaknesses and strengths, giving them an opportunity to improve their performance.  The programme initiated centralized assessments of the trainees across the country which helped in standardising the process.

 

To improve the capacity of the STeP trainers and encourage them to use learner-friendly teaching methods, extensive four days training sessions were conducted in Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Bengaluru.

 

Exposure visits took the students outside the confines of the classroom into the real world where they would soon be working. Employer engagement programme brought professionals from the industry into the classroom who shared their experiences. 213 employer engagement sessions and 203 industry exposure visits were held during the year.

 

STeP programme’s central placement cell coordinated with potential employers in the retail and service sectors and was able to achieve around 70% placement, securing employment for 5256 youth. STeP has tied up with over 150 reputed brands like Airtel, Eureka Forbes, Burger King, Reliance Market, HDFC Bank, Aegis, Wave Cinemas, D-Mart, Westside and Vodafone to provide employment to the trainees.

 

STeP was benefitted significantly by volunteers from Universities and colleges, who as part of the internship programme, assisted the STeP coordinators. The volunteers conducted sessions for the trainees on retail management and communication skills; workshops on confidence building; role plays and activities as part of personality development.

 

To know more about our STeP programme please log in to http://www.smilefoundationindia.org/e_learning.html

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Empowering Grassroots: Strengthening the base of the socio-economic pyramid in India

The growth of the non-profit sector in India in the last two decades has been phenomenal. India has possibly the largest number of active non-government, not-for-profit organizations in the world. Official estimates put the number at 3.3 million. From relief services to educational initiatives, from healthcare projects to housing organizations, grassroots NGOs work in numerous spheres which touch the daily lives of marginalized communities across the country. Engaging directly with the people, these NGOs are able to participate in the thought-making process of the communities they work with, and thus have the capacity to bring about long-term change. As such, the sector has had a substantial contribution in the nation building process.

 

But accelerated development soon reaches a stagnant point if it is not sustainable. Ensuring sustainability of initiatives requires a reorientation of NGOs focusing on their capacity building to attain competitiveness. This is not an easy transition, requiring NGOs to rethink and reform their programme designs, planning, fund mobilization, fund management, and effective programme delivery. There is also a need to guide these NGOs to be able to identify and adapt with the changing national and global socio-political and economic developments which affect them. To equip and facilitate grassroots NGOs in the country to address these issues and eventually aim at achieving sustainable development at the grassroots and community level, Smile Foundation initiated Empowering Grassroots.

 

A national capacity building programme, Empowering Grassroots is aimed at handholding, training and enabling community based organizations (CBOs) to maximize their impact on the ground. Under ‘Empowering Grassroots’ initiative, CBOs are trained on vital issues relevant to the development sector in the country like scalability, sustainability, communication, resource mobilization and governance by industry experts from reputed Indian and international organizations. Handholding meetings and face to face learning sessions are held round the year to help the CBOs effectively resolve their day to day operational challenges, helping achieve the highest social return on investment (SROI).

 

Empowering Grassroots is not only an effort to strengthen the bottom of the socio-economic pyramid in India, but also an attempt to bring transparency and accountability in the workings of the development sector at the grassroots level. So far, Smile Foundation has built the capacities of more than 5000 grassroots organizations under the initiative.

 

To know more about our programs in empowering grassroots, please log in to

http://www.smilefoundationindia.org/empowering-grassroots.html

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Communication as a tool for the development of the rural masses in our country

Communication is the core activity of human association in general and progress as well as development in particular. Human life cannot exist in isolation. A man’s survival in the society is only through communication. Therefore, communication is identified as the oldest continued activity of human being since birth and goes on and on till death. More precisely, communication is the basic need of human beings and web of society which makes the survival, growth, progress and development of man possible and holds the society intact and progressive.  Communication is a vital part of personal life in the society. It is equally important in business, education, civilization, administration and other situations where people encounter with each other to satisfy their needs and wishes. Communication maintains and animates the life. It leads people from instinct to inspiration, through process and system of enquiry, command and control. It creates a common pool of ideas, strengthens the feeling of togetherness through the exchange of messages and translates through into action. As the world has advanced, the task of communication has become more complex. However, unless some basic structural changes are introduced, the potential benefits of technological and communication development will hardly be put at disposal of the majority of mankind. The rural poverty and its related incidences may decline if one puts efforts for sustained growth in agricultural production. Therefore, the communication is the most powerful input which brings substantial development in socio-economic status of an individual.

 

The term communications can be used in three interrelated ways: firstly, it refers to the interactions and engagements which take place between different actors in the education sector; secondly, it looks at the transmission of information, knowledge or data between two or more points and thirdly, it refers to the processes and means though which these interactions take place. Communications in this respect is multi-faceted and multi-directional, it is both an event and a process, and can be the interaction, as well as the means of interaction.

 

There is a range of arguments which can be put forward for the importance of integrating communications within education systems especially in the rural areas of our country. Some of these are highlighted below and explored. It can be claimed that good information and effective communications might help:

 

• enable communities and civil society to engage with educational issues at the school level, raise issues with educational providers and promote accountability of provision and promote public engagement with educational reform programmes.

• increase public awareness of educational rights in rural areas and make the uptake of educational services more likely, both for children and adults.

• provide evidence to support decision-making processes.

• improve the quality of policy formulation.

• build shared understandings which may lead to social change.

• improve educational service delivery and policy implementation.

• involve the voices of the marginalized groups, to make educational provision relevant to their needs.

• empower people to make decisions and develop ownership of educational processes.

• improve the quality of learning and educational outcomes.

 

Therefore the necessary part for the development of the rural mass would be of spreading the word and expressing the needs and wants of the rural masses through different modes of communication. Spreading the word itself is a powerful tool to share their thoughts, ideas and necessities which can fall in the right hands and ensure in the upbringing of the rural society. The struggles, schemes, policies, educational service can all be uplifted with the simple medium of communicating with the world outside using the correct form of platform. Smile foundation is associated with the welfare of the society and our platform is one place where we give our interest in looking after the needs and requirements for development of the needy. Smile Foundation ensures in benefiting the society with proper education, health, livelihood and women empowerment.

 

Visit us at http://www.smilefoundationindia.org/ to know more about our work.

You can log in to our facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/smilefoundationindia.org/ and be a part of our communication to support us in helping the society.

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For A Greener and Sustainable Planet – Around Us

The color green has always been associated with plants, shrubs, trees and grasses. But in present times, the green patches are being wiped away to make space for concrete structures/establishments. As a result, denizens are forced to be displaced, loss of livelihood, increasing pollution levels, destruction of natural habitat and many more.  Just last two consecutive years, Delhi faced the problem of smog (crop burning, vehicular pollution, deforestation and others). In order to curb this prevalent problem, governments and civil society actors encouraged people to use carpooling, odd-even strategy, artificial rains and planting trees and the list goes on.

 

Yes, the environment around is deteriorating gradually and often opens up a Pandora box of negative impacts. If we have to preserve the environment for the generations yet to come, then children can surely be the flag bearers of these important initiatives. This isn’t a time bound project rather follows on the axiom of intent, innovative and inspiration. Therefore, individuals from any walk of life may follow these principles that help in conserving the environment for time immemorial.

 

  • Conserve Water

 

Being a responsible citizen of the planet, we can always opt for a three minute shower as compared to prolonged baths. Secondly, those homes that are gifted with kitchen garden should use watering cans to water plants and vegetables as compared to pipes and others. Finally, always wash or clean your vehicles on grass instead of a concrete platform.

 

  • Plant a Tree

 

As a parent or a guardian always encourage your children to plant trees around vicinity. It not only uplifts the mood and instills the important quotient of responsibility such as caring and watering the plant on regular basis. We can also move a step ahead by ensuring water conserving plants find place in the kitchen gardens such as beets, lettuce, fennel and others.

 

  • Recycling-A Sorting Game

 

One of the major brain building exercise is the sorting of recyclable materials from inorganic products. Some of the interesting exercises are conversion of old plastic bottles into plant holders, leftover food to prepare new dishes and others. The recycling sorting game requires everyone’s participation and contribution to make our planet- a habitable place for generations yet to come.

 

  • Carpooling and Walking- Mode of Transport

 

In times when reducing the pollution and saving the environment should be the motto of life. Therefore, opting for carpools and walking to workplace should be a preferable choice. The benefits of this choice are particularly enormous such as saving fuel, saving money and getting a good workout too.

 

These are some of the principles that can be followed by all of us. It can surely bring forth a positive change in the environment. Why wait for times when pollution levels specifically in the winter continue to haunt us, if adequate steps are taken on suo moto basis, surroundings are bound to change. We already have sowed the seeds of conservation or preservation in us, all we need to do is getting into action.

 

Plant a small sapling, right away!