On 14th May 2016, the Earth5R intern team included SriRanjini and Manisha Swaminathan from Bangalore conducted an upcycling workshop at the DRDO Township for the children residing in the servant quarters.
The children residing in the servant quarters at DRDO studied in government schools in which the primary language is Kannada. Their parents work as domestic helpers at DRDO quarters and many of them additionally work as cooks, cleaners and drivers outside the township, just to make ends meet.
The workshop started off with the children being enlightened about the concept of upcycling and its uses and advantages. It was rewarding to see that the kids were very excited about this idea and also making useful products out of waste and discarded materials such as paper, plastic and glass. After the brief introductory session on upcycling, the team taught the children to make paper bags and paper baskets out of mere newspapers and glue, which they found very enjoyable.
With some initial guidance and a little bit of help with certain procedures from the team, the children began enthusiastically making their own versions of the paper bags making it unique. They made paper bags of various sizes with handles.
The team also taught the children how to make Paper Mache and create bowls out of it. The kids were very eager to get their hands into the process of making the Paper Mache mixture. The bowls were made and laid out to dry in the sun. Meanwhile, the kids started making paper baskets with rolled sheets of newspapers.
As the workshop progressed more and more kids in the locality were being drawn to the buzz surrounding the workshop and 30 kids in total participated by the end of the workshop. The entire experience turned out to be very interesting and delightful for the kids as well as the interns.
–Reported by Manisha Swaminathan and Ranjani, Photos by community children, Edited by Anushka Mehta