Delhi based doctor Ruby Makhija along with her husband who is also a Doctor and her daughter who is a student started a store from where anyone can borrow shopping bag whcih is retunable for those who always ask for the platsic bag from shopkeepers.
To create a sense of responsibility and ownership towards Society and Environment with the aim to improve the overall living conditions. The name of the Foundation suggests that one should invest time on a regular basis towards the betterment of Society & Environment. The family came up with the idea to give shopping bags made of the leftover cloth pieces available with the local tailors.
Vikalp means Alternative or Solution,
Justifying its name, this project aims at reducing the use of single use plastic by providing alternatives to the same at source. This includes establishing of stalls to borrow cloth bags in markets of SDMC South Zone. Cloth bags are provided by the Foundation in all for these stalls. Consumers may pick up the cloth bag by making a payment of Rs 20. On returning the cloth bag (in good condition) at any of these Vikalp stalls, he/she can take back a refund of Rs 20. Stickers are placed at all shops in these markets mentioning the location of Vikalp stalls.
This "Borrow a Bag" facility will not put a financial burden on the consumers and will encourage them to give up plastic bag and adopt a cloth bag thus reducing SUP consumption. Awareness events are held in these markets to engage the consumers/shopkeepers and create awareness on waste management and single-use plastic.
Project Vikalp was launched on 29th November 2021 in Green Park Main Market. Subsequently more stalls were established. As on today, 80 stalls in 56 markets of SDMC, SZ and WZ are functional.
The Foundation maintains the inventory and financials of the cloth bags. It also replenishes the bags on payment basis. Expansion and establishing new Vikalp stalls in more areas and addition of more alternatives to SUP is done in consultation with SDMC. The stall is set up in one of the existing shops in the market and the shopkeeper takes responsibility of the bags. The bags, board for the stall and stickers to be pasted at all shops in the market are arranged by Why Waste Wednesdays Foundation. Board and Stickers carry the logos of SDMC, Why Waste Wednesdays Foundation and the CSR partner/Donor.
A QR code has been designed that is linked to App/Website that provides all information on Project Vikalp, location of Vikalp stalls Single-use plastic problems, simple solutions, plastic waste management rules, donors/partners etc