US ambassador visits Dharavi slum

May 11th, 2010 - 9:02 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, May 11 (IANS) Dharavi in central Mumbai, known as Asia’s largest slum, had an unusual but distinguished visitor Tuesday - US Ambassador to India Timothy J. Roemer.
He spent time at the Sharanam Centre for Girls and ACORN India to acquaint himself with the working of these NGOs and how they are engaged in transforming the lives of the people they serve in the slum.

ACORN India representative Vikram Adige explained to Roemer how it has developed a waste management programme that organises rag-pickers and trains them in the scientific methods of handling waste, segregation and recycling.

Adige took Roemer on a tour of the organisation’s segregation centre and other facilities, allowing the ambassador a first-hand glimpse of the NGO’s innovative methods and community organisation in Dharavi.

Roemer also interacted with Dharavi residents and others connected with the two NGOs.

The US Consulate in Mumbai has also partnered with both the NGOs in the past - the US Consul-General in Mumbai Paul A. Folmsbee had hosted girls from the Sharanam Centre at a picnic with the consulate staff.

In March, the US Consulate had also co-sponsored a ‘Water To Earth Campaign’ with ACORN India which educated children in 30 municipal schools on the importance of water conservation.

The campaign culminated in an Eco-Fair at the Mahim Nature Park in Dharavi last April 18 as a commemoration to the 40th Earth Day celebrations.

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