Environmental Action Internship, July 2014
The Environmental Action Internship was a two-week-long internship designed as a platform for the youth to engage hands-on with issues of sustainability, development, conservation and the environment in Bengaluru.
The interns were exposed to relevant aspects of biodiversity, resource management, environmental policies, and gained an understanding of the challenges that our urban ecosystem faces. Through this internship, Bengaluru Needs You
‘s aim was to sensitize the participants to the environmental predicaments of the city and empower them to play an active part in the transformation of the city.
The Environmental Action Internship brought together ecologists, nature lovers and concerned citizens who care about the environment. There was a mix of studio activities and field visits. The studio activities comprised of debates, role-play, workshops and interactive sessions with eminent speakers who have made significant contributions to this field. Field activities included visits to lakes undergoing transformation with Mr. S Vishwanath, Water Expert, working extensively on the Jakkur Lake, who spent a day with the interns explaining to them the functioning of the Sewage Water Treatment Plant connected to the lake. This visit provided the interns with great information on the methods of solving water shortage problems encountered in the city. After the visit to the Jakkur Sewage Treatment Plant, the interns also visited Charlie’s Animal Rescue Centre (CARE) and interacted with Ms. Sudha Narayanan, the founder of the organisation.
Another field visit was to Daily Dump, where the interns learned the value of segregation and composting. The workshop on using a Khamba- a terracotta vessel that converts organic waste to compost was indeed a very fun-filled experience for all of them. The EAI interns also had a thought provoking interaction with noted architect Sathya Prakash Varanashi, who spoke to them about sustainability and how being sustainable benefits us. Mr. Kuldeep Dantewadia, CEO and Co-founder of Reap Benefit also spoke to the interns about his organisation, their body of work and collaborations with educational institutions and corporate firms.
Dr. Ullas Karanth, leading tiger expert and Director of the Wildlife Conservation Society – India Program conducted a session which was truly an experience of a lifetime. The experiences he shared with the Environmental Action Interns followed by a short movie on his endeavours were extremely fascinating. He also expressed his concerns over inaccurate tiger census and conservation of forests and wildlife. The EAI interns spent an entire day at the Bannerghatta National Park for a wonderful nature walk and safari organised for them.
Overall, the internship was a unique learning experience for all and helped develop and instil a sense of responsibility especially when our beloved environment is concerned.
The largest part of my experience was the researchers and professors I met at Studio Chaape. I’ve spent a year so far in college learning about environmental issues, policies, and solutions; seeing these things in terms of Bangalore wouldn’t have been possible without all the talks I attended in the last two weeks. This internship has also taught me to be more realistic when crafting solutions for environmental problems; not all the great ideas I’ve picked up over the years would be pragmatic in Bangalore, and that’s no cause for disappointment.
– Smriti Kumble
The internship enabled us to visit places like the sewage treatment plant, Daily Dump and also Bannerghatta National Park. It was an wonderful experience. Also, when we were divided into groups, our activity didn’t stop in front of the computer, but we went out and interviewed the public; their view about the state of Bangalore today. It was amazing to be a part of BNY.