TAMIL NADU

Youth join hands for a cleaner environment

Anasuya Menon

COIMBATORE: Youth Helping Hands, a network of the youth, especially college students, who mobilise support for orphaned children in Coimbatore, are coming out with a campaign on global warming.

They have formed among themselves a group, “Voice of the Youth for a Clean Environment” (VOYCE) for the purpose. “We have been working with orphaned and abandoned children in the district and are constantly working towards their welfare,” says R. Arun, the founder of Youth Helping Hands. “Roping them into the campaign for a cleaner environment will take the campaign a long way,” he adds.

Having grown up in an orphanage himself, Mr. Arun knows only too well the hurdles children like him have to overcome in terms of finding education, acceptance from society and employment. “If we make the children at the orphanages conscious of the need to preserve the environment, they will surely grow up to be better citizens,” Mr. Arun says.

VOYCE was mainly formed to popularise among the youth the need to preserve natural resources and bring down pollution, thereby reducing global warming. “We have always been silently carrying out environmental conservation activities,” says Anup Dominic Boro, another volunteer of Youth Helping Hands. “By forming a group, we plan to get more people to be involved in the fight against global warming,” he adds.

The volunteers have planned to visit schools and colleges and carry out cleaning activities on streets and public places.

They would also talk to the public, going from door to door, spreading awareness about solid waste management. College students who are interested in being a part of the campaign can contact the network, Mr. Boro said.

The group, VOYCE, would be formally launched on June 29, the same day when a mega event for children of orphanages will be organised in the city.

A few months ago, the Youth Helping Hands had organised a cultural programme for the children from orphanages. “It turned out to be a grand success. I got a lot of calls congratulating our efforts, but very few people were actually willing to help the children,” Mr. Arun says.

“There are plenty of talented children in the orphanages. But they are always marginalised and seldom get an opportunity to exhibit their talents,” says Arun.

Though the network enjoys strong support from about 2,000 college students who also volunteer to teach dance, music, arts and crafts to the children, very few corporate houses show willingness to help the children. The number of people who donate for the children is also very few, he says.

Anyone who can sponsor the children’s educational or medical needs can contact 98941-60981 / 9843295287 or 9345559815.

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