In search of the right solutions, people across the country are coming up with novel initiatives to manage plastic waste. One among them is the district of Dahod that is situated on the banks of Dudhimati River in Gujarat which has started a Plastic Cafe.
The ‘plastic cafe’ has been set up in front of the Dahod tehsil panchayat as part of the Centre’s flagship ‘Swachh Bharat Mission Grameen,’ with a view to making the tribal dominated district plastic free.
The initiative is intended to promote plastic recycling and reuse and reducing plastic pollution. It would also create awareness about the harm caused by plastic waste, District Development Officer, Mr. Rachit Raj said.
Plastic waste that is gathered by individuals can be handed over at the cafe, in return for coffee /tea and snacks. The system is being managed by the Sakhi Mandal Bahnein – a Self Help Group (SHG).
While with half kilogram of plastic waste, one can get a free beverage, for 1 kilogram of the same, the individual can get snacks as well.
The cafe would also cater to others who can avail refreshments and other basic amenities for a nominal cost. The DDO explains that it is a 3-way model where the operation is handled by women of SHGs. Firstly, it supports women empowerment as finance is regulated by women. Secondly, it provides a new livelihood option for them as they can earn by selling what they make. Thirdly, it builds awareness about the need to reduce plastic waste which encouraging recycling and reuse.
“The system will soon be implemented in all talukas of Dahod,” he added.