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Used Plastic As School Fee- Assam School Exempts Students From Fee

Every day we see millions of people surviving on plastic in any season of a year. The waste generated from plastics comes with zillion side-effects to the humans and the environment that they live in.

Image source: Northeast India

Recently, Akshar school in the state of Assam have replaced school fee with used plastic. For them, plastic is their means to procure free education. The rule is to bring 20 used plastic gathered from their home and local area to school every year.

Parmita Sarma an Assamese started this project with her New Yorker husband Mazin Mukhtar. She said “The use of plastic is rampant across Assam. In order to stop the widespread burning of plastic in these villages, we decided to educate the community on the health hazards of burning plastics”

“In addition, the parents have to make a “pledge” not to burn plastics,” said Sarma. According to local non-government organization Environ, Dispur alone which is home to just under a million people produces 37 tonnes of waste rubbish daily.

“Earlier, we used to burn the plastics and we had no idea that the gas emitted from that was harmful tour health and environment. We also threw these away in the neighborhood. But that would never happen again,” Said Menu Bora, the mother of one pupil.

The school after accumulating the waste plastic recycles it to make “eco-bricks” which can then be used to construct new school buildings, toilets or pathways. The students also receive a basic remuneration for doing this task.

“The parents of most of our school students cannot afford to send them to school. It was tough but we have motivated them back to school.” Says Mukhtar Co-founder of Akshar school.

What do you think?

Written by Sanghamitra Gogoi

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