May 24, 2016

Posted by in 2016, Children Workshop Report, News | 0 Comments

Children workshop – Chandola talav and Railway station



On the first day of the children’s workshop and field trip, our group along with the coordinators visited the locality of Chandola Talav where we saw a lot of small scale businesses like broom making, dying and other processes. What we observed was very unique. There were broom making households on one side and the other side was occupied by regular houses. The children started asking them different questions about their lifestyle, process, working conditions and the response we got was satisfactory. At first some of them were reluctant to answer but eventually they started sharing their experiences about their work and also the process.

We made the following observations from our field visits at Chandola Talav and Kalupur Railway Station:

  • The work was distributed according to skill and required specialization. A lot of them had a low educational background and they were trained right from their childhood
  • The problems were plenty. One of the main problems they had to face was segregation of the broom sticks. They said it was very time-consuming


  • Secondly, to compile the broom sticks together they were using string of metal and cutting it off with their hands. This created a very hard region between the index finger and the thumb. They said it was no longer a problem and it had become a habit. This was very shocking to see that they were happy living with the problem


  • There were different kinds of broom they had prepared. The  transportation to the nearest market was done on cycles. The  cycles had to bear tremendous am
  • 1.3ount of load which they had  to carry from one place to another to sell
  •  Our next stop was at the dying center. We had the opportunity  to see the traditional dyeing methods without use of any  modern technology. The workers there used a chemical dye  which they got at subsidized prices. They had to filter the dye to  get a fine mixtureand then make a solution out of it.
  • This was t  then added to the boiling water. The cloth was tied to a tight  bamboo and then dipped in the hot water and kept in about ten minutes.
  • After sometime the color would nicely spread across the cloth. This was then dried under the fan or wind. The fabric would then be said to be dyed


  • The shopkeeper in general did not complain much regarding the sales or business. But they said they would love to be in touch with the modern technology which had more efficiency and time saving
  • 1.2
  • They werein direct contact with chemicals which was evident by the stains on their body. This could be detrimental to their health
  • In the evening we went to the Kalupur railway station and examined the situation there. Though the station was very well connected there waschaos and confusion at the station. Construction activity was going on at the railway tracks
  • The station was very crowded and one of the main problems we noticed was the waste and litter on the tracks and the station floor. The waste management system at the railway station was in poor shape


  • We managed to meet some coolies and asked them about their daily work and routine and what problems they faced. They were generous enough to tell us their problems. They told us that their work had taken a toll on their bodies. They wanted a solution for this. Their daily wages varied according to the season


Following the observations made by children in the field visits, and their interaction with the local people, we started off with a session wherein children began to ideate for the problems they could identify in the previous day’s field visits. Some of the problems identified were translated into ideas and sketches by children looking to come up with a solution for the issues. These problems identified, and some of the solutions proposed by children were:

  • Alternate method for segregation of broom’s raw material into various stick sizes, and process for easy rolling of ribbons around broom sticks to tie them together so as to make it easy for the workers to make various classes of brooms (Yashi)
  • Tackling the problem of dust that comes out of the broom sticks in the broom making process that might result in various respiratory diseases (Yashi)
  • Solution to ease out the task of selling brooms for a broom maker/seller who has to ride long distances in extreme weather conditions to sell brooms (Jaykrushna and Naumaan)
  • Raw material and water wastage at a fabric dyeing workshop, and untreated discharge of water mixed with chemicals into a nearby lake (Heel and Harshil)
  • Prevention to exposure of workers to harmful chemicals and heat while dyeing a cloth at the dyeing workshop (Heel and Harshil)
  • Solution to the problem of carrying heavy luggage by passengers at large flights of stairs at railway stations (Jaykrushna)
  • Method to maintain railway stations more clean by making garbage collection easier for rag pickers (Khushi)

    Model to ease out the process of broom selling

    Model to ease out the process of broom selling


Model to put ribbons around broom sticks













These solutions were proposed by children working independently on their  own, without any interaction with other children or support from other  team members.



Model to ease out the process of broom selling


Model to ease out the process of move luggage up the stairs at railway stations








After these solutions were proposed, all the members of  the  group decided to take up and work upon the problem of bad  working  conditions of workers in the dyeing workshop due to  exposure to harmful  chemicals and heat. With collaborative  working and putting up their ideas  together, children came up  with an improved solution to the problem  which was much  more efficient than the earlier model prepared by one    participant.



Prototype to segregate broom sticks in broom making process


Prototype to prevent exposure of workers to harmful chemicals and heat









1. The number of pulleys in the system got reduced from 11 in the initial  model to 3 in the final one, making the system much simpler

2. The complex locking mechanism of fabric was replaced by a simple hook  system

3. The wood used a fuel initially was replaced by unused waste material  from broom making process, and a simple mechanism of movable  platform with pulleys was also put in place for easy picking up of dyed  fabrics

The workshop concluded with presentation of our ideas and proposed prototype to Prof. Anil Gupta and other participants.

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