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City-based NGOs Goonj, Chintan win 'Urban Age Award'

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Two city-based NGOs have been selected as the winners of this year's 'Deutsche Bank Urban Age Award' for their contribution in improving the quality of life and urban environment.

The award carries USD 1,00,000 prize money, and this year's winners, NGOs Goonj and Chintan were selected from a total of 135 entries from all over

Based in south-east Delhi's Madanpur-Khadarpur village area, Goonj, formed in 1999, works on the issues of urban waste and social distribution.

"It believes in utilising vast quantities of untapped old and waste material in middle class households and re-using material to create second-hand products," the jury described the award-winning entry.

As per its 'My Pad' programme, the last bits of otherwise torn and unusable cloth materials are transformed into sanitary pads for rural women.

The other winner, Chintan, through its Material Recovery Facility (MRF) at the Railway Station manages tonnes of unsorted garbage from the numerous trains that arrive at the railway station everyday.

"The garbage that would end up in landfill dumps outside the city is sorted into organic and non-organic waste by trained workers at the centre.

"The project demonstrates that with process innovation and courageous partnership building...Urban waste management in a mega city like is both possible and urgent," they said.

The award is associated with the Urban Age project, a worldwide investigation into the future of cities jointly initiated by Deutsche Bank's Alfred Herrhausen Society (non-profit organisation), and LSE Cities at the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Among the other nine entries included Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) Nizamuddin urban renewal initiatives, DDA's Yamuna Biodiversity Park, Delhi Haat, Katha labs - education and self-employment and Khoj art foundation.

Centre for Social Research (CSR) and Centre for Urban and Regional Excellence (CURE), Sawda Ghevra known for its 'Potty Project' were other entries.

The awards are given annually for initiatives within a specific city that utilise partnership to improve the quality of life and urban environment.

The Award began in Mumbai in 2007 and travelled to different cities around the world each year, Delhi being selected for 2014.

First Published: Fri, November 21 2014. 13:30 IST