May 24, 2016

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

Children workshop – Ramapir Tekra and Ranip Vadaj

Children workshop – Group 5

Introduction: UNICEF- SRISTI arranged a Children’s Workshop from 22 May to 24 May 2016. The objective was to make them cognizant of the problems of the society and to encourage them in brainstorming for solving them. To get an in-depth experience of the problems, the children were divided into six groups and were provided with Volunteers and SRISTI Summer School 2016 Participants. We were in group five with six children.

Field trips

Day 1: 23 May, 2016

Participants: Siddhesh, Yug, Milind, Rahul, Aman and Dhruvin

Volunteers: Sanket and Megha

Location: Ramapir Tekra, Ranip Vadaj, Ahamedabad

We visited Ramapir tekra, Ranip Nava Vadaj in Ahmadabad in the morning session, which is basically a slum area. The children spoke to the people, asked them questions about difficulties faced in their day today life. We visited some of the small scale businesses going on there and tried to understand the problems faced by workers. During the afternoon session we visited two NGOs, Manav Sadhna and Safai Vidyalaya.

(1) Visit to a scrap glass dealer, Ramlal Modi: Mr. Modi (basically from Udaipur) is a scrap glass dealer for last 15 years and it’s his family business.

Problems Observed by the Children:

  • Breaking glass bottles (breaking bottle using another bottle) by hand is time consuming and cumbersome
  • Results in injuries and more than often the glass pieces bounce back on face
  • Removing metallic and plastic caps
  • Sorting of bottles according to their color
  • Each sack of broken glass should weigh 20 kg before they are sold to the secondary dealers.

5.2  5.1

Opinions on the problems:

  • All the above problems can be solved by mechanizing the whole process however affordability of such system is real challenge.
  • Some of the simple solutions can be using hand gloves/ mask while sorting and breaking bottles or use of hammer to brake bottles in closed box etc.

2) Visit to a Paani Puri Thela: Mr. Shyamsundar, a Paani Puri Thela Owner says that it almost takes a full day for two people to make approximately 10,000 puris.


Problems observed by the children:

  • Small house and five people stay in such a small place and the same place was being used to make puris.
  • Frying inside the house posed ventilation problems. There were hygiene issues too
  • Lot of manual efforts are involved such as preparing “atta” for puris and then making flat puris from this atta using hand and then frying all these pieces in oil.
  • Opinions on the problems:
  • All the problems faced by Mr. Shyamsundar can be solved using simple machine or mass manufacturing system.
  • If there are already machines available for such task then many questions arise such as What are the problems associated in using these existing machines? What are the key parameters: affordability, manufacturing capacity, need of skilled labor, etc?


3) Few other observations were:

  • Beds were kept outside of almost all the houses for many reasons such as: less space inside the house or because it was less hot outside. We can think of an alternative to these beds or making foldable beds to save space.

5.5   5.4

  • Another observation was that most of the electrical meter connections and wiring was outside house in open area. This increases the chances of electrocution in rainy seasons. How can we prevent such unfortunate incidents?
  • Hygiene and cleanliness is poor in all the slum areas despite policy change from central government and nationwide mission such as “Swachh Bharat Campaign”. The intriguing questions were why would someone want to live in dirty place at all? What causes nationwide missions to fail? What can we learn from these failures and can we use technology to speed up this slow improvement in people’s mind-set and awareness about health and hygiene.
  • The street hawkers have to bask in the scorching sun and take heavy load from an area to the other.


4) Visit to Safai Vidyalaya/ Environmental Sanitation Institute: This institute was started by Mr. Ishwarbhai Patel. Currently, they provide training to people in mitigating health and sanitation issues. Additionally, they are promoting thoughtfully designed toilet models for needs such as scarcity of water. They also have biogas plant design which they suggest to use as a renewable source of energy.

Some of the observations were:

  • The new toilets and biogas models developed at Safai Vidyalaya are technically good but the design is very basic and simple. That can be one reason that their brand toilets are not sold in shops. They might lack the aggressiveness in terms of marketing and supply chain management, being an NGO, even with very good products.
  • Biogas model also has many benefits but it’s not popular amongst people in rural areas.


Day 2

The Children were told to analyze the problem they saw on their field visits. After discussions with each other about the problems and the probable solution arriving strategy, they were requested to design their ideas on chart papers. SRISTI volunteers and the Summer School 2016 participants helped the students with the technical details and the etymology.

Different children took up various ideas and arrived at spectacular solutions which we as adults might never have thought of.

Some of the ideas are as follows:

1)    Puri Maker

5.7  5.8

The hopper will bring the dough to the conveyor. The suction and compression force from the shafts will flatten and convey the puris to hot oil.

2)    Bottle crusher: Bottles are crushed by impact mechanism and sorted out on the basis of different colors by reflectance photometry.

5.9 5.10 5.11 5.12

3)    Hawker problem: to solve the common problems associated with riding a hawker.

In this model, a child explaimed that some perons was trying to tay silly. Attaching the folding seats and umbrealla.It sources the concepts.


The Children presented the ideas and also made thermocol prototypes.

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