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Hyderabad: Here’s how high schoolers are improving waste management


Hyderabad-based non-government organisation ‘Civitas’, started by high schoolers, is striving towards better garbage management in the city.


Have you ever been conscious about how you segregate your wastes, or aware of how hazardous it is for the environment if you don’t? With growing concerns of increase in global waste, waste management and segregation are vital for avoiding ecological and health hazards, and yet are often overlooked. With an aim to raise awareness among people, the Hyderabad-based non-government organisation ‘Civitas’, started by high schoolers, is striving towards better garbage management in the city.


Founded by Rithvik Jampana, Sideesh Reddy and Vansh Lohia, grade XI students at Sreenidhi International School, in October 2020, the NGO has been collecting disposable wastes from various communities, and sending it to local recyclers. Apart from this, the team of 25 volunteers visits various localities in the city to build awareness regarding waste management by giving seminars and tips for better managing the garbage.


“As we observed that e-waste, the most dangerous kind of waste for the environment, is not being disposed of properly, even in residential areas where well-educated people live. We understood the lack of awareness that people have on waste management and decided to start the organisation,” said Rithvik.


Stating that they initially started with e-waste drives at identified residential places and corporate offices, he added that the team has learnt various methods of disposal and recycling over time as they researched, which they could then implement and educate the residents.


Ranging from e-waste to metal waste, Rithvik claimed that the organisation has collected and sent about 3,00,000 kgs of waste for recycling. The NGO also places its bins at residential colonies and communities for people that provide residents a facility to specifically dispose of e-waste and fabric waste.


One of the key verticals of the organisation is to help trash-pickers around the city. The NGO is allocating a portion of their funds to provide health and safety kits containing boots, cut-resistant gloves, and other necessities to the trash workers. “Through our research, we found that the lifespan of our country’s trash-pickers is just 38 years due to the dangerous conditions they work in. Trash pickers are the ones who keep our country running, yet they are rarely acknowledged,” explained Rithvik.


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