“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” — Dr. Seuss
Enactus IITD has once again brought laurels to the college.
The team grabbed second position in the Enactus National Competition, meeting the standards set by itself in the past years, with the first place in 2015 and second the year before that. The significance of their feat is increased manifolds by the fact that the projects they presented were only 4-5 months old, as compared to other college’s projects that have been going on for at least a year or two. Every year the Enactus teams from all over India present their projects and after a rigorous competition, three teams out of around a hundred, get awarded for their efforts. The teams put in a great deal of effort to ensure that the goals of Enactus are met. This year IITD presented two of its projects – ‘Nirmalya’ and ‘Titli’.
Scrounging for gold in humongous piles of garbage full of our reeking trash, shards of glasses, blades, pins and stuff is the harsh reality of nearly one lakh people in Delhi. And in most cases it just goes for a meagre earning of 4000 a month. Enactus IIT Delhi team who started ‘Project Nirmalya’ aimed to provide an elegant solution to this problem. They identified the root cause to be unsegregated waste coming for people and so they conducted awareness drives in 5 societies of Dwarka to promote household segregation. The waste, segregated into three sections – organic, dry and reject waste, is then used as a resource and it generates better economic value. The organic waste is converted to manure and then used in the parks. Dry waste goes for recycling. The revenue generated by selling dry waste is given to waste collectors thus improving their livelihood. It is estimated that it will reduce 180 Tons of waste from going into landfills from these societies in around one year, thus reducing a significant amount of greenhouse gases that is generated in landfills. Not to mention the good quality manure produced in the process. They have successfully collaborated with South Delhi Municipal corporation and plan to extend it to the whole of Dwarka. They have also collaborated with different volunteering organizations to help them with awareness drives.
The other project, ’Titli’ is targeted on providing good quality, affordable sanitary pads to women. This project was born when the team went to Rajasthan for their previous project ‘Aanch’ and noticed that women in rural areas were using unhygienic methods to control menstrual bleeding. It not only compromised the sanitation of the surroundings but also affected women’s health. They conducted surveys and found out that this problem is basically due to three main reasons : Affordability, Accessibility, and Awareness. To solve this, the team bought a low-cost sanitary napkin making unit and installed it in Tilak Nagar. The machine can produce 7200 packets a month, at its best. The napkins are sterilized and are based on gel technology. The cost price of a packet, consisting of 8 pieces, is Rs. 12.50 and the team sells it at Rs. 20; which is much less than the similar products available in market thus reducing the cost barrier. The unit is maintained by a resident of Tilak Nagar, Baldev Singh, who is Baldev Uncle to the Enactus team. He was unemployed before, but now he is an entrepreneur and earns Rs. 19000 per month. Apart from him, the unit also provides employment to around 5 women with a salary of Rs. 5000 per month. To take care of accessibility part they are collaborating with different NGOs to sell their pads through them in their communities. They have even received the orders from various NGOs including ‘Deepalaya’, ‘Shine’, ‘Mrydo’ and ‘Chetanalaya’, for around 2000 packets. In addition to this the team is currently designing a cheaper and more effective unit themselves. They also hold awareness sessions in rural areas around Delhi, telling women about the health hazards of not using sterilized pads and fighting the menstruation taboo.
The team and the way ahead
The Team leaders, Anurag and Manvi, fourth year students, say that Enactus offers an opportunity to hone your skills in various fields, be it innovation or entrepreneurship or social interactions or even designing. But above all is the satisfaction of making a difference in the society and the pride of representing your college on a national and even international level. The innovation head, Shailendra, agrees with Anurag and says that it was while working for R&D in Enactus he found that his true passion lies with research and innovation. Enactus gave them a chance to actually go in the outer world, realize the problems faced by the people and devise a solution to it. Talking to people, collaborating with NGO’s, planning the solution of a problem from ground level, and of course, teamwork; these are some of the invaluable experiences that Enactus offers to all its members. And they work so enthusiastically for it, that they gladly sacrifice their vacations for it too! And this all doesn’t seem to go in vain.
With their eyes on gold next year,
They aspire. They believe. They achieve. They are Enactus IIT Delhi.