NGO Saahas’ Alag Karo Spreads Awareness and Institutionalise Source Segregation of Waste


Gurugram: Launched by Saahas, a non-profit organisation, along with among Tetra Pak India, Coca-Cola, Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Alag Karo programme aims to spread awareness and institutionalise source segregation of waste. 

Initiated in 2017 across residential and commercial establishments in Gurugram, the programme successfully implemented on-site composting processing 8.9 tons of biodegradable waste daily, thus cutting down GHG emission by 12,000 tons of CO2 equivalent per year with an estimated social benefit of INR 42 million. It also helped in inculcating a sense of responsibility towards waste management amongst various stakeholders, changing the attitude from NIMBY ‘Not In My Back Yard’ to MWMR ‘My Waste, My Responsibility’.

A collaborative effort among Tetra Pak India, Coca-Cola, Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and NGO Saahas, the initiative has sensitised 23,800 kids across 39 schools and implemented its sensitizing efforts in 22,000 houses across 42 residential societies in Gurugram.  The programme also helped in savings of more than INR 3 million annually, in tipping fee by the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram due to on-site composting in 21 societies processing 8.9 tons of biodegradable waste daily.

Currently, the programme is in its second phase – Alag Karo 2.0, which aims to address the issue more comprehensively, by adopting a Model Ward for Sustainable Waste Management program, that can be further replicated in all other wards of the city.

The overall impact made by the Alag Karo programme includes:

  • The programme had an SROI (social return on investment) of 2.66, in 2019-2020. For every Indian rupee of investment, INR 2.66 of the social value attributable to the stakeholders was created.
  • Trained 10,000 individuals (including residents, volunteers, domestic help, housekeepers) in 390 training sessions
  • Diverted 23.9 tons of waste from the landfill daily. Of which, 8.9 tons of biodegradable waste is composted and 15 tons of dry waste is sent for recycling.
  • Promoted sustainable lifestyle and contributed to building the social-entrepreneurship ecosystem of composting solution providers, crockery bank programs, sustainable/natural cleaning product sellers, etc.
  • Increased community engagement towards social and environment issues, social inclusion of housekeeping staff, waste workers, domestic help and adoption of 3Rs – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle.