In India, more than 600 million people defecate in the open and over 3 lakh children, under the age of five, die due to diarrhoea and water borne diseases.Vijay Chadda, CEO of Bharti Foundation in 2014 during the Banega Swachh India 12-hour cleanathon committed Rs. 100 crores to build toilets in India.
The company was established in 2000 with a vision to help underprivileged children and young people of the country realize their potential.
Speaking to NDTV, Vijay Chadda added, “It’s not about making statement; it’s about getting things done on ground. I am happy ‘Swachh India’ as a movement is gaining popularity now, people have actually started coming together to make this initiative a success.”
Bharti Foundation as a company has already undertaken an educative initiative ‘Satya Bharti School Program’ which aims to provide free quality education to rural underprivileged children. In addition to it, on August 18, 2014 the company also decided to spend Rs. 100 crores for ‘Swachh India’ initiative.The programme covers rural Ludhiana and the aim is to provide every rural house there a toilet and to build a separate toilet for girls in government schools. According to the estimates done by the company in early 2014 based on the data available at that time, for the first phase of ‘Swachh India’ moment, it was expected that around 30-35 thousands toilets need to be built in rural Ludhiana. Here’s what has been achieved so far:
Top 5 Highlights of the Bharti Foundation’s Campaign are:
- Bharti Foundation’s ‘Satya Bharti Abhiyan,’ provides toilets to every household without making any discrimination based on social or economic status.
- The abhiyan also provides fully functional toilets and does not charge the beneficiary household or government for the cost of the toilets.
- The campaign has healthy processes for implementation thereby garnering community participation and transparency.
- The campaign lays emphasis on behavioural change by promoting usage and maintenance of toilets by households. This is done through information, education and communication activities.
- School children are used as agents of change to inculcate and promote good practices of sanitation and hygiene. With this, more than 3000 toilets have been constructed so far.