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August-September 2018 | People of Action

Making a difference in Pune

Making a difference in Pune

A Rotary global grant has allowed Welsh Rotary clubs to invest in a hygiene project in the city of Pune.

Cardiff Bay Rotary Club has been working with seven Rotary clubs in India as part of an imaginative hygiene project in the city of Pune.

Thanks to a global grant, the Welsh club has joined forces with seven Rotary clubs in Maharashtra, led by the Rotary Club of Pune Inspira, to address the challenge of the safe disposal of sanitary napkins.

Pune Inspira is a modern, currently all-female Rotary club and this was its first Global Grant project.

Some 250,000 used sanitary napkins are discarded in Pune every day.

They choke drainage pipelines, litter footpaths and infect the waste pickers scavenging on landfill sites.

What’s more, they take 500 years to degrade.

This $77,000 (£54,700) project involved installing 168 incinerators in colleges, girls’ hostels, Mahila Ashrams, schools and public places across Pune.

Rotarians also delivered basic hygiene training to over 10,000 girls.

It is estimated that 16,000 women and girls will continue to benefit directly and 70,000 people indirectly from this project every day.

It has also demonstrated that Rotary is playing its part in the campaign to clean up India’s great cities by 2019.

Cardiff Bay’s contribution to this project was £9,500 with further funds contributed by the Indian Rotary clubs and matched by Rotary Foundation grants from both Districts’ Designated Funds and the World Fund.

The Welsh club was anxious to ensure that it was responding to a genuine local need and not simply imposing a project on a community that was not a priority for that community.

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