Modern School Vasant Vihar, New Delhi

Project Cura I A Multidimensional Initiative

We are delighted to share a blog written by student Myana, from Modern School Vasant Vihar, New Delhi, who is part of a team delivering a Global Goals project for the 2021-22 GSL Global Goals Competition.

Their project is among over 957 social action projects currently running as part of the GSL movement and we are excited to be supporting them to design and lead positive social change in their community!

We are strongly against cursing existing systems, and instead believe in taking action, big and small, to change the world for the better.

Project Summary

It all started a year ago, when I decided to make the grand and difficult shift from constantly complaining about the problems that I see around me to actually doing something about them.

Inspired by Gandhi’s words, I was determined to be the change that I wanted to see in my surroundings. But then the pandemic worsened, annoyed and disappointed, I had to put off my venture. During this time of crisis, I saw how people collectively came together and helped others in their community. This made me realise how important a strong community is in times of hardship and uncertainty. Therefore, when I resumed my work, I was sure that I wanted to do something that would give back to my local community in every aspect.

I was glad to find three other friends, Aadya, Ayeshaa, and Shaurya, who shared the same compassion and thus came about Project Cura.

For the past 3 months, we’ve been working with export houses to procure large quantities of waste cloth which is repurposed into cloth bags stitched by impoverished women working in the slums of Delhi. We then distribute these bags to fruit and vegetable hawkers to give out to their customers in place of plastic packaging. Through each step of the production and distribution process, we wish to uplift the status of different sections of the society and encompass a variety of social and environmental issues. What keeps our team’s spirits high is the philosophy that change is initiated when we take initiative.

The Journey

When we first started this project, we didn’t anticipate it reaching the heights that it has today, and we feel immensely proud to say that it has taken the form of a non-profit system that brings various issues and segments of society under it.

Great success, however, does not come without great challenges, and conducting this project amidst a pandemic was one of these. Through every step of the project, we had to be mindful of the Covid norms. Thus, most of our pre-project research interviews were conducted online, export houses and residents of the localities were contacted via social media and the distribution of our cloth bags was done in a systematic manner while following all necessary precautions. But, this also meant that we didn’t get the opportunity to interact with the women involved in the stitching process and the local vendors as much as we would’ve liked. On the bright side, we did learn the importance of open and honest communication and proper coordination.

What I like about the organisation of our team is that even though we have our own interests and inclinations, each one of us helps in every aspect of the project. While some of us are better at coordinating and being active in the fieldwork, others are more involved in writing the research paper and public speaking, but we ensure that each member contributes to every area of the project conduction. This enables us to step beyond our comfort zones, learn from each other’s strengths and help others overcome each other’s weaknesses.

The Next Chapter

In order to really make a difference, we realise that we will need to implement our locally targeted project on a much larger scale. We intend to achieve this goal by encouraging others to implement similar social initiatives or adopt our distribution and collection system in their own localities.

It is believed that we need big people to come up with big answers to tackle the big problems that the world faces. So, what can teenagers, like you and me, do to help? Nothing? This is not true. I feel that the real power lies in small steps to change the world. My advice to those who wish to start initiatives like ours is to not get intimidated by issues that they plan to tackle and to dare to fail greatly to achieve greatly.