Guwahati School, Akshar Forum Accepts Plastic Waste As School Fees

by Mrunal Mahajan
Guwahati School, Akshar Forum Accepts Plastic Waste As School Fees

Akshar Forum a small school in Guwahati, India, is encouraging underprivileged children to collect plastic from their village and is accepting that plastic as their school fees. The school from its initial stages worked with the objective of educating children to “earn a livelihood by being responsible to the government”.

With the motive to encourage parents to send their kids to school and lessen their burden of school fees, Akshar Forum decided to accept plastic waste as school fees. They took up this program six months ago and have been following it ever since. It was about time someone made a start!

Also Read: IIT Guwahati Creates India’s First Biodegradable Plastic

“We wanted to start a free school for all, but stumbled upon this idea after we realized a larger social and ecological problem brewing in this area,” Parmita Sarma, co-founder of Akshar, said in a conversation with The Better India.
The school administration wanted to change this in Guwahati, they said it was normal to burn plastic in their area. The toxic smell of the plastic made them take this step. We need more such unconventional schools.
They allow students to work towards what they love and are passionate about instead of forcing students with a strict curriculum. How I wish all our schools had this!

Also Read: Plastic Found In Mariana Trench During Mankind’s Deepest Dive

According to the Plastic Ocean Organisation, we are producing 300 million tons of plastic per, 50% of which is for single-use purposes. More than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped into our oceans every year. Plastic waste is not treated properly nor is it recycled, and we gladly managed to dump all of the plastic outside our house, thinking ‘How does this affect us?’. Just throwing garbage is not the solution, we have to make sure that it is recycled and never goes to the ocean.

Also Read: Planting 2 Trees Now Mandatory To Get A House In Kerala

Even after introducing a ban on plastic in most areas, we still manage to ask the vendors to give us a plastic bag. How difficult is it to carry a cotton bag? Make a start!