Chennai

Ahead of ban, these schoolboys want to do a clean swap

Pitching in: The bags are being made by residents of the Rehoboth Home for Mentally Challenged Women.

Pitching in: The bags are being made by residents of the Rehoboth Home for Mentally Challenged Women.  

They’re collecting bedsheets and pillow covers to convert into bags

Two schoolboys in the city are taking the upcoming plastic ban as a challenge and are planning to distribute one lakh cloth bags in the coming days.

Jai Aswani, 16, and his brother Preet, 12, students of the Sindhi Model School, Kellys, run a social enterprise, Born To Win. They have now embarked on an ambitious project to replace plastic bags with cloth alternatives.

The project to distribute the cloth bags is also being supported by Fever FM and the Rotaract Club at Ethiraj College. The bags are being made by mentally challenged women at the Rehoboth Home for Mentally Challenged Women, Varsha Aswani, mother of the two boys told The Hindu. “We are collecting bedsheets and pillow covers at various locations in Chennai and converting these into cloth bags. My mission is to donate one lakh cloth bags. I would like to bring about a change and inculcate the use of cloth bags among people,” Jai said. Preet said the idea was to ensure that people have a friendly involvement in the issue of plastics and contribute to the cause of a plastic-free society.

Contributions from all

The team is already in the process of making 35,000 bags and is hoping to get more contributions from citizens and corporates. “We will be distributing about 200-300 cloth bags on December 22. This is just a curtain-raiser. We hope to hit the one lakh mark by January 15,” Jai explained.

Ms. Varsha said they would also be distributing these cloth bags to small vendors across the city. “People bargain with these small vendors while buying vegetables. How can such vendors afford to provide cloth bags when people are bargaining to buy vegetables? We hope to address this issue as well,” she added.

So far, Jai has collected 100 bedsheets from GRT hotels. “We hope more corporates will contribute to this initiative. If they want, they can put their logos on these bags,” he says.

It costs about ₹5 per bag. This expense is, at the moment, being met by friends. The students of Ethiraj College are also contributing, by providing 5-10 bags each.

The team will host a collection (of bedsheets and pillow covers) and bag distribution drive at Grand Square, Velachery on December 22.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 3:22:11 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/ahead-of-ban-these-schoolboys-want-to-do-a-clean-swap/article25792583.ece

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