Chennai

Rain Centre to support rainwater harvesting initiatives in Chennai’s government-aided institutions

Rain Centre, which has been advocating rainwater harvesting in public spaces and large campuses, is now supporting educational institutions to harness rainwater

Rain Centre, which has been advocating rainwater harvesting in public spaces and large campuses, is now supporting educational institutions to harness rainwater   | Photo Credit: R. Ragu

The voluntary organisation is working at SDNB Vaishnav College, Chromepet and Ethiraj College among others, to make them self-reliant for their water needs

In a bid to help more institutions sustain their source of groundwater, the Rain Centre is now focussing on harnessing rainwater in government aided educational institutions to make self-reliant for their water needs.

The Centre, a city-based voluntary organisation dedicated to creating awareness on rainwater harvesting (RWH), found that several charitable organisations depended on groundwater for their daily requirements but did not have funds to harvest rainwater through recharge wells.

Over the past five years, the Centre has helped nearly 41 charitable organisations and schools, including Lady Sivasamy School, in and around the city, to harvest rainwater falling on their rooftops as well as surface run-off. The initiative is being supported by corporate social responsibility funds.

The Centre's director Sekar Raghavan said, “We started supporting government-aided educational institutions who postpone RWH measures for lack of funds and under daily management pressures.”

The latest among the institutions the Centre is helping are SDNB Vaishnav College, Chromepet and Ethiraj College where recharge wells are being built in their large campus. These institutions mainly depend on groundwater and sometimes need to buy from tankers to bridge the gap in water needs.

“We are building 25 recharge wells in Ethiraj College to make them self-sufficient in water requirements. At present, they depend on groundwater and draw water from 3-4 borewells to supply the college and three hostels,” said Mr.Raghavan.

Once the project to provide recharge wells and interconnect them with rainwater collected on the rooftop and surface run-off is completed, the groundwater table is expected to increase by two or three metres in the college premises. The aim is to conserve rainwater and not let a drop of rainwater on to the road or sewer network.

The Centre will soon start work at Sankara Nethralaya, St. Thomas Mount too. The groundwater table will be monitored in these organisations.

The institutions are chosen based on a few criteria, including large campuses and those relying on groundwater. A display board will also be put up specifying details on the quantity of water harnessed, he added.

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Printable version | Feb 24, 2020 6:25:57 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/chennai/rain-centre-to-support-rainwater-harvesting-initiatives-in-chennais-government-aided-institutions/article30641991.ece

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