This NGO is giving away gifts in return for your waste

'Green Yatra' is a group of 20 environment-conscious citizens and is currently running a campaign called ‘Bag for Cause’, under which it has collected 100 tonnes of recyclable waste from housing societies and has also planted 1.3 lakh fruit trees in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR)

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While plastic ban in Maharashtra is gaining momentum and will be given its final shape on March 13 on the occasion of Gudi Padwa, Green Yatra — an NGO in Mumbai — is trying to do their bit towards nature and encouraging Mumbaikars to donate their waste by giving them cotton, cloth or jute bags in return.

Green Yatra is a group of 20 environment-conscious citizens and is currently running a campaign called ‘Bag for Cause’, under which it has collected 100 tonnes of plastic, electronic and other recyclable waste from housing societies in the Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR). The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has confirmed that the NGO has gifted over 20,000 bags in return for the waste. People donating waste can also opt for a plan instead of a bag.

The group has also claimed to have planted 1.3 lakh fruit trees such as coconut, mango, chikoo, guava, pomegranate, and more, across the MMR – including unit 19 and 22 in Aarey Milk Colony, Malad, Gorai, Virar, Thane, Bhiwandi, – since 2010.

Green Yatra aims to eliminate the use of plastic, reportedly one of the primary sources of marine litter, and also encourage the use of alternatives to plastic. The waste that comes to the NGO is either sent for recycling or returned to the industries and reused.

As told by Pradeep Tripathi, the founder of Green Yatra, the campaign also helps empower underprivileged and tribal women. The group has identified and employed tribal women in the rural and urban areas who design and stitch the bags that can carry 15 kg of weight each, and earn up to ₹10,000. Running a training centre in in Ambadi in Thane, dedicated to tribal women since 2012, the group plans to empower 1,000 tribal women by 2018, by setting up more training centres in Wada, Jawhar, Manor, Dahanu, Kalyan, and Karjat.

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