Sarojini was a widow with a son to raise dwindling in poverty. After much hard work she participated in the election campaign and was selected as a member of the Local Authority through the mandatory 25% quota for women. When the USAID/DIG Jaffna LANTERN project was initiated she was interested in participating in the training of trainers (TOT) programme to understand the objectives of the project.
The knowledge on Plastic and Polythene is something that needs to be compulsorily fed amongst the community and this is evident through the life of Sarojini. Before the TOT training she used polythene to start a fire, after a few years became an asthmatic patient who suffered with difficulty in breathing. But she was unaware that the daily use of polythene for kindling her hearth was the reason behind it.
After attending the TOT training she felt that the knowledge she has imbibed from it on SWM, the 3Rs (reduce, reuse and recycle) system and the toxic effect of plastic and polythene has to be passed on to her dear sisters who are part of her village. They too use polythene in their households on a daily basis. Sarojini is now educating her friends who are home breeders and those she knows in the community, to reduce the use of plastic and polythene.
As a member of the Local Authority Sarojini was part of the Chavakachcheri UC regulation imposed on the ban of using polythene at Urban Council halls. In this context, instead of polythene lunch sheets, which are toxic for consumption, banana leaves should be used to serve lunch. After speaking to the Central Environmental Authority Sarojini wants to collect plastic bottles from recyclers and sell plastic as a small scale business. She is looking for capital to start a small scale business.