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ICAR-CIBA, Chennai conducted an awareness cum speech competition among coastal communities at Thonirevu village, Pulicat, Tamil Nadu to sensitize the coastal women, men, youth and children on impact of swatch bharat mission and minimizing the use of single usage plastics on 26th December, 2022. The program was intended to create awareness among the coastal communities on the side effects of single use plastics and introduce them to the national mission on cleanliness, sanitation and hygiene. Awareness sessions on importance of village based swachhta campaigns, effects of plastic on marine life and oceans, importance on minimising plastic usage, recycling of fish waste to value added products etc were given to the coastal communities by CIBA Scientists and staff.

The awareness program was followed by a speech competition wherein 7 coastal women participated and presented their views on a clean and plastic free India with emphasis on negative impacts of plastic on environment, importance of reducing open defecation, water management, how to use domestic wastages. Prizes were distributed to the participants. The program concluded on a positive note with feedback from the participant’s on importance on shunning single use plastic. Cleaning materials were distributed to the self-help group members for cleaning their village premises. Totally 50 participants including farmers, self-help group members, scientists, staff and students were attended the programme.