In Wanaparthy, 14 highly enthusiastic NSS (National Service Scheme) (age groups) youth volunteers from the Government Degree College for men, participated in a complete “Zero Emission” (Green) IEC initiative named Swachha Wanaparthy Yatra.
As a part of the Yatra, students travelled to 8 gram panchayats on a 160-km journey by bicycles over 10 days. There was zero carbon emission or use of fossil fuels in this nature friendly initiative. The event was flagged off by the Collector and District Magistrate of the district, Ms Sweta Mohanty from Achyutapur Gram Panchayat.
The idea of engaging students was to connect with youth and engage them in the Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen campaign in motivation and awareness building exercises and also assist economically poor households in construction of toilets.
In preparation for the Yatra, the students underwent one-day training under the guidance of Zila Swachh Bharat Prerak, Mr G. Bharath Kumar and Mr Sadashivaiah, faculty and student mentor on various aspects pertaining to the Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen. This included Community Approaches to Sanitation (CAS), Twin Leach Pit technology, process of construction of toilets, hand washing techniques and ODF plus activities such as segregation of waste at household level, etc.
Day one of the Yatra comprised on cycling to Rajanagaram gram panchayat across an 8 KM stretch to conduct IPC activities. This included meetings with village community, door to door visits, speaking to fellow students and children during the day. Thereafter, the students cycled for 24 kms to halt at Keshampeta Gram Panchayat. En-route this journey they did shramdaan by helping a single old lady to construct her toilet.
Visiting one gram panchayat a day, the NSS volunteers conducted a variety of IEC and IPC activities involving local officials, engaging with the community and connecting with the youth of those gram panchayats.
In total, the youth helped construct 11 complete toilets and 43 partly constructed toilets. They inspired and motivated many families along the way.
Swachh Bharat Summer Internship (SBSI)
As a part of SBSI initiative launched by the Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation recently, the district administration of Wanaparthy engaged in dialogue with both students and administration of the Post Graduate Centre, Kollapur (South Campus of Palamuru University, Telangana) and SVM Degree and PG College, Gadwal. As many as 29 students who were pursuing their Masters in Social Work (MSW) from the institute enrolled for a 45 day internship to support SBM-G in the district. As many as 3,47,056 interns have enrolled in SBSI as on 6th July, 2018. (Link: https://sbsi.mygov.in/)
The interns were trained by the ZSBP in a rural internship programme where they acted as change agents and resolved issues at the villages and accelerated the pace of toilet construction in the community. Their activities resulted in the declaration of two blocks as open defecation free (ODF). Their contribution not only helped the local officials in steering the Swachh Bharat movement but also increased pace of construction and usage of toilets.
The district SBM team under the leadership of the District Magistrate has utilized every opportunity to ensure that the district achieves ODF status by October 2, 2018. Now that the sanitation coverage has crossed 83%, it has decided to take up ODF plus and ODF sustainability activities.