Zero Waste ambitions of the Young Roots

Waste is undertaken as an environmental problem, but is often devoid of an argument that the issues in waste management also cause economic loss. Not only does improper waste disposal contribute to creation of greenhouse gas effects and cause significant harm to marine and wild life, but is also losing production efficiency and opportunities on cost reduction associated with purchasing raw materials achievable through recycling.
It is undeniable that reducing the production of waste is the ultimate procedure towards reducing pollution. But while reducing the production of waste is important, waste management also plays a vital role. As the quantity of waste generated is steadily increasing every year, it is getting more challenging to monitor and manage waste disposal. So it is upon the individuals to not only follow through safe, Eco-friendly waste disposal practices but also encourage others around them to do the same. Energy conservation and 'Recycling' are among two great ways to eliminate improper waste disposal.

'Young Roots' is a not for profit organization that promotes environmental wellness and takes action to aware people about environmental concerns and how people on individual and community level can take initiatives to help minimize environmental damage.
The organization has been working to mitigate the serious issue of waste management that we have been facing for a long time. The team is currently spearheading two different projects. 'Zero Waste Schools' forms an Eco-club in the schools, trains them on the practices of waste segregation by teaching students the power of the 5 R's, and focuses on reducing waste by distributing color-coded dustbins while teaching them to be aware of the types of waste they generate. Young Roots also promotes 'Zero Waste Homes' by conducting zero-waste workshops in different communities. This campaign trains them about the practices of waste segregation and encourages community participation to create a sustainable future.

Riya Basnet, Miss Nepal Earth 2019, who instigated the emergence of this organization, has been a crucial support in the success of the projects. Her initiation with a belief that they can be a part of a big positive change has touched over 100 households and aims to reach 400 more by the end of this year.

Managing waste disposal is not a task too big or too small. The habit of recycling, re-purposing and refusing materials that are no longer usable and will instead be sent to a landfill, can avoid risks to the environment, protect scarce resources, provide economic benefits and reduce dependency on raw material and non-renewable energy.

Young Roots Nepal

My Journey at Canopy Nepal - Sabanam Thapa, Former Program Assistant, Canopy Nepal

Sabanam Thapa
This is Sabanam Thapa, a former Program Assistant and a forever member of Canopy Nepal, who is passionate about working with children. As a student pursuing undergraduate studies in Social Work and interested in work with children, I was introduced to Canopy Nepal for my undergraduate’s mandatory fieldwork by one of my faculties, Mr. Sanjeev Dahal.

After consulting for my internship with my faculty, I had several thoughts in my mind about my engagement in Canopy Nepal. One of the major questions for me was if I could be able to work to the level of their expectations, which kept me doubtful about my engagement in this education-focused organization. But after seeing their work and also knowing that the organization was initiated by Mr. Mohit Rauniyar, one of the alumni of Thames International College, where I am also pursuing my undergraduate studies, I decided to do my internship there without thinking about it any further. I was fortunate enough to be recruited as a Program Assistant in one of the signature programs of Canopy Nepal - Learners’ Hub, a program primarily focused on the development of interactive learning opportunities for school children in form of EIC Classes, Katha Bunaun, Lekhaun, and Young Learner’s Camp Sessions.

Sabanam Thapa with other facilitators after Katha Bunaun 
I am fortunate enough to have Canopy Nepal as one of the organizations where I worked during my Bachelors’ degree which familiarized me with the work-life balance. It was my first time when I had ever worked in an office setting, thus I believe I had made many mistakes initially, but I had rarely been criticized by my colleagues instead got motivated to work harder. In this tenure, I learned different tools that can be used in my workspace which includes the use of Google Productivity Applications, Trello and Adobe Designing products which I was unaware of, which enabled me to be more effective and efficient at work.

My tenure, not only involved me working as a staff member but also involved me working as a facilitator in the 4th edition of Katha Bunaun which took place in Creative Academy School, Kirtipur for Bal Sahitya Mahotsav. I got to learn a lot of interactive techniques for facilitating students through activities. In this process, I was fortunate enough to see the increment in their confidence level and improvement of their presentation skills, as the students were encouraged to participate throughout the program. I was overwhelmed when the moments spent in those five days of Katha Bunaun had turned into the most memorable moments of my life. I feel amazing when I still visit the school where I have students greeting me, talking about how they miss the program and how they learned so much. Some of the students still talk to me through Facebook. 

Canopy Team with Ms. Bonnie Sharplin, a friend of Canopy
When I was working at Canopy Nepal, I remember I was once provided an opportunity to make a magazine that consisted of stories written by students in Katha Bunaun. It was one of my biggest projects for which I had to learn Adobe InDesign, that was a great challenge as I was not aware of it earlier. It definitely took more time than I had expected and required a lot of research on finding the perfect theme, color even the title. It went through many tests and trials yet, through rigorous work and support we compiled an amazing magazine. 

The most amazing thing about Canopy Nepal is the line that we draw in our personal and professional lives while equally balancing it. While we work, we always maintained a professional relationship with the bare mentionings of our personal lives. But, during lunchtimes or other casual coffee conversations, we were unstoppable! The conversations and laughs had no limits! Out of the many things, I like Canopy was that all of us, regardless of the number of staff members,  had lunch together. Plus, the value of learning something new every Friday, where a member was supposed to show and discuss a short video or a topic of discussion, where I got to learn many things even through such discussions. Sometimes, we had our own share of humorous debates during the lunch hour. 

Sabanam helping her students during Katha Bunau workshop 
The members were like family more than colleagues, allowing me to share my issues with the concerned person without any hesitation. For example, if I felt as if I had to do something I was unfamiliar with and unaware of, I was always welcomed to talk about. It feels amazing as Canopy Nepal provides opportunities for the staff members to grow while they work. I think it is one of the most important aspects of any organization which could be lacking in other organizations. 

Canopy team with Canopy Friend from ISL
Each and every member of the Canopy Nepal family puts in efforts towards bringing about change in the traditional education system in an innovative way and making education more accessible. This has undoubtedly brought many fruitful results and smile among the students we worked with. Every day at  Canopy Nepal, we would come up with new ideas to work and provide effective results with due appreciation to one’s ideas and initiatives. Looking at the growth I have seen in myself and the working nature of people here, I would certainly recommend young leaders and students who wish to bring changes to the current education system in Nepal to be a part of Canopy Nepal in every way possible. 

Even though I am taking a hiatus from work, I still consider myself, a member of Canopy Nepal. I still make my visits whenever I miss the workplace and the people.  I wish to re-join the organization sometime in the later future. I must say, working at Canopy Nepal has taught me many important life lessons, professionally and personally with a lot of room for errors and learnings but always with fun! 

Written By: Sabanam Thapa

Edited By: Mohit Rauniyar


Hem Shankar Yadav, Canopy Excellence Scholar
Hem Shankar Yadav is a Canopy Nepal Excellence Scholar-FESSHIP who has recently completed his high school studies from National Integrated College with an interest inclined towards Medical Field. He is originally from Janakpur Sub Metropolitan City, Dhanusha. After his father’s death that took place when he was only eight years old,  he is survived by a single mother and two siblings in Janakpur. After his father’s death, Hem and his family faced economic crises and issues in the family. Then, Hem’s mother was suggested to send him to his studies in Kathmandu by the neighbors that would keep him far from the economic pressure and familial disturbances. Following their advice, Hem’s mother finally sent Hem to Kathmandu for his further studies and was brought up at Nepal Dalit Mahila Uthan Kendra Orphanage, which supports deprived and ingenious children till their secondary level studies. 

Hem with other Canopy scholars after the internal Futsal Program 
Hem’s life changed after he was sent to Nepal Dalit Mahila Uthan Kendra. Although his life was hard there, especially because of him requiring to work for his dinner and criticisms particularly related to his life and education, Hem managed to complete his secondary education from Valley Public School with a good score. After completing his secondary schooling, he graduated from the orphanage services and decided to consult his problem with Friends of Nepal Adelaide Inc. (FONAI), a group of social workers, working voluntarily in the foster organization. With FONAI agreeing to support him for his living and education, Hem finally decided to join National Integrated College for his high school studies with a focal person who was based in Nepal under the scholarship provided by FONAI.

Hem during a first aid workshop organized by scholarship team
Intending to expand the organization and to systematize the scholarship, Canopy Nepal was formally announced as an implementing partner of FONAI run Educational Scholarship Program, commonly known as FONAI Educational Scholarship Program (FESSHIP) in 2018, one year after Hem was selected as a scholar. After the formation of FESSHIP, Hem realized the positive changes and efficiency in the implementation of the program.  Unlike before, the tension for timely payments of college fees has reduced and Hem, himself has realized, the shift of focus from financial aspects of life towards greater academic achievements. Adding on, the skill-based workshops and training sessions provided by the scholarship team that includes, email etiquette, basic first aid training, Internet of Things (IoT) & Networking, Emotional Intelligence, and Leadership Skills have enabled their overall growth,  have provided them proper exposure, knowledge, confidence and motivation to strive for greater success in the upcoming days.

FESSHIP scholars after an event 
Thanking FESSHIP, Hem said, “FESSHIP has been a family for me without FESSHIP it would have been very difficult and I wouldn’t have been in this place today. The support and guidance have uplifted me so much. Being a scholar of FESSHIP I have seen many changes in myself, I have been getting exposure, knowledge, confidence, ideas which have been very helpful for me.” This has motivated the Canopy Nepal Excellence Scholarship- FESSHIP team to strive for ensuring better accessibility for students like these in the near future. 

(Based on a conversation with Hem after his consent for publish of this post)

Written By: Anjali Maharjan (Canopy Nepal) 
Edited By: Pransu Khakurel (Canopy Nepal)

Anjali is a Junior Program Assistant at Canopy Nepal, where she is providing her assistance in ensuring better education accessibility to the students pursuing their high school and undergraduate level studies. Apart from this, she is also undertaking her undergraduate level studies majoring in Social Work and Rural Development at Thames International College, Battisputali.

Canopy Nepal, with a team of enthusiastic youths, is providing scholarships, interactive sessions and workshops to improve the education system, little by little. The solutions provided by the experts are always implemented in our programs in ways that fit them best. 


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