Wildlife Week Celebration - 2008
Wildlife Week was celebrated from 1st to 5th October in Godrej Mangrove Centre (Soonabai Pirojsha Godrej Marine Ecology Centre) to generate awareness about the Wildlife / Nature conservation among the Society.
On 1st October Celebration of this mega-event was started with informative presentation by Dr. Shrirang Bakhale and Mr. Sudhanshu Nulkar titled rescue of injured animals with special reference to birds. The slide show covered various aspects of animal rescue such as the first aid for injured birds, feeding, handling and other precautions. This was followed by a film on common birds. Around 35 enthusiastic nature lovers from Godrej Colony along with NGO representatives, Veterinary students and other animal lovers participated in this program.
A Nature trail for bird watching was organized on 2nd October. The Day began at 7.30 am with 103 nature lovers from G & B, Colony residents, Garden enclave, and nature lovers from different parts of Mumbai (from Kalyan to Borivali) gathering at Gate No 7 and Vikhroli East Railway station, from where they were taken to the Godrej mangroves. Introductory talk was given by Dr. Maya Mahajan explaining the purpose of celebration and the importance of Wildlife Conservation. Participants were divided in two groups. Two parallel Nature trails were started at 8 am. One was led by Bird expert Mr. Adesh Shivkar and Dr. Maya Mahajan (from Mangrove Centre).
Another nature trail was led by Mr. Shashank Dalvi (Bird expert) and Mr. Hemant Karkhanis (Mangrove Centre). Around 25 types of birds were observed including Long tail Shrike, Fantail flycatcher, Green bee-eater, Parakeets, Drongo, Koyal, Redvented bulbul, Redwhiskered bulbul, Barbet, Tailor bird, Weaver bird, mangrove associate White cheeked bulbul etc.
While explaining about identification of the birds Mr Adesh Shivkar mimicked calls of many birds and made the trail very interesting. The trail was followed by a wonderful slideshow on Birds in different habitats by Mr. Adesh Shivkar. He explained about different types of birds, their habitats, food habits, migration etc. Around 80 people enjoyed this show.
On 3rd October Mr. Kaivalya Varma from Reptile Rescue Study Centre presented a slide show titled Snakes our Friends in Pragati Kendra at 4.00 PM. His presentation covered types of venomous and non- venomous snakes found near us, their habits and habitats, myths and facts about snakes, first aid for snakebite etc. More than 100 people including Mahila Mandal, Union leaders, Workers from various departments of G & B, Garden workers, College students participated in the program.
On the same day an exhibition on Wildlife Conservation was organised. Six environmental organisations namely Godrej Mangrove Centre, BNHS, WWF, Srushtidnyan, Sparrow’s shelter and Gangajal Nature Foundation participated in the same and displayed their posters on wildlife, books, bird shelters, T-shirts and other articles.
Butterfly Nature trail was organised on 4th October under the guidance of Dr. P.R. Arun, a butterfly expert. In this trail, we could observe more than 20 types of colourful butterflies. Around 110 nature lovers from G & B colony residents, college students, researchers and citizens from Mumbai and Pune enjoyed the trail as well as colourful slide show presented after nature walk in which he revealed the secrets of fantastic world of butterflies to the nature lovers.
The celebration concluded with a pledge by all to conserve nature and its wonderful creatures and spread the message of nature conservation among the society.
Due to huge demand we had to extend the program on Sunday. We had organized a butterfly nature trail again on 5th October, Sunday. The four days program was covered by DD News and appeared in DD Metroscan on 10th October at 6.30 pm
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Van-Mahotsav Celebration - 2008
Every year Garden-Mangrove sections celebrate Van-Mahotsav in the first week of July to raise awareness about nature conservation among the society. This year we had organised various programs for different groups such as Godrej employees, Udayachal School Children, neighbourhood communities, architects etc.
This year’s celebration was inaugurated on 2nd July by Dr. K.A. Palia along with Mr Maneck Engineer and Mr. Purvez Gandhi by planting rare species of Mangroves such as Bruguiera cylindrica, Bruguiera parviflora and Ceriops tagel. Mr. Anup Mathew, Mr Biswajit Kumar were the special invitees of the function.
Around 65 employees participated in the function. Participants greatly enjoyed the visit to the luxuriant Mangroves conserved by Godrej.
A nature trail through mangroves and visit to Medicinal plant and Palm garden were also organised for the staff of Construction Division.
The group enjoyed the beautiful and rare fishes displayed in the Marine aquarium. They were also given interesting facts and information on various species.
Slogan and poster competition on Forest conservation and Nature conservation were also organised during this occasion for Udayachal high-school children by Mangrove section. We received a very good response.141 students participated in these competitions.
In the afternoon mangrove club members visited the hillside nursery. Different techniques of plant propagation were demonstrated by Mr Ram Nivas Rathor, Sr Manager, Mr Ravindra Walujkar and Mr Laxman Buva of Garden department.
On 3rd July Mangrove club members from Udayachal School Ms Vaishnavi B., Ma Vighnesh Bhandarkar, and Abhijeet Mishra presented slide shows on Trees of Mumbai and Pirojshanagar for 7th std. school children.
On the same day visit to Godrej Mangroves was organised for 10th Std students from Udayachal High School. Dr Maya Mahajan explained about the importance of nature/forest conservation and how children can contribute to save environment and mangroves. It was followed by a Nature trail through the Mangrove led by Mr. Hemant Karkhanis, of Mangrove Section
Seeds of different vegetables were sowed by little angels from Udayachal Primary school in their school
campus on 4th July. Seeds of different types of vegetables such as Amaranthus, Spinach, Lady’s finger, Beet, Cow-pea etc were shown to the children and nutritive values of these vegetables were explained.
In the afternoon a presentation on Medicinal Trees by Dr. Ogale was organised for Garden supervisors and other interested people at Hillside nursery.
A Mangrove Nature trail was also organised for Godrej customers- neighbourhood communities- ie residents of Garden enclave and for architects on 5th July. Around 65 residents of Garden enclave participated in the program, which included Mangrove nature trail, visit to Medicinal, Palm garden and Marine aquarium
Information on importance of nature conservation and the efforts taken by Godrej to conserve mangroves and maintain greenery in the Pirojshanagar was shared with the participants. Program concluded with the plantation of saplings of Barringtonia (Samudra phal) and Neem trees in Creekside area by young participants from Garden enclave.
World Environment Day - 2008
On 5th June the World Environment Day was celebrated by SPGMEC in collaboration with WWF-India, Maharashtra State Office. A plantation of mangrove saplings was conducted in Godrej Mangrove area. The participants included WWF members and nature lovers from different institutes such as Institute of Science, M.D. College, St. Xaviers College, Ruia College, Khalsa College, Sathye College, Saraswati Secondary School, Parle Tilak Vidyalaya, Bombay Scottish, Kedarnath English medium school, Seeds of Peace organization. Plantation program was followed by a recycled Paper making workshop.
The Day began at 7.30 am with 52 nature club members, WWF-India subscribers and volunteers gathering at Vikhroli East Railway station, from where they were taken to the Godrej mangrove center. At the center the participants were introduced to the World environment day theme for 2008 i.e. “Kick off the Habit towards a Low Carbon Economy”. This was followed by a nature trail led by Dr. Maya Mahajan, Mr. Hemant Karkhanis, Dr. Goldin Quadros and Ms. Gauri Gurav. After the trail the participants were also taken to the Marine aquarium followed by the mangrove plantation drive. A total of 50 mangrove saplings were planted which included Avicennia marina, Brugueira cylindrica and Salvadora persica. The plantation was covered live by IBN Lokmat channel where Dr. Mahajan was also interviewed regarding Godrej's Mangrove conservation efforts as part of their Programme on Wednesday – 08.
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After the plantation programme a Paper recycling workshop was held in the mangrove campus from 10.00 am till 12.00 noon. The workshop was well received by all the participants.
In the afternoon, an Oscar winning film titled- An inconvenient truth- A Global warning’ by Al Gore was screened for the staff of Construction division. An overwhelming response was received from the employees of construction Division and hence the film was screened in the two sessions. Mr. Maneck Engineer, Mr. Purvez Gandhi & Mr. Anup Mathew were special invitees of the program. The film show was followed by brainstorming session on Becoming a part of the solution in combating Global Climate Change
On 6th June a nature trail in magnificent mangroves conserved by Godrej was conducted for construction Division, which was lead by Dr Maya and Mr. Hemant Karkhanis. The presence of Mr. Purvez Gandhi Chief Operating Officer and Mr. Bishbajeet General Manager of construction Division made the visit more lively.
The trail started from the Jetty, where an introductory speech was delivered by Dr. Maya followed by visit to to watch Tower, Medicinal Plant garden, Marine aquarium, a walk through the pathways inside Mangroves and ended at Palm Garden. People enjoyed the breathtaking view of vast Mangroves and rare marine fishes in the aquarium. Information on medicinal plants and palms in the garden was also shared with the participants.
22nd April : Earth Day
On 22nd April, Earth Day was celebrated by screening a film titled Global warming ‘An untold story’ which talks about four stories explaining the impact of global warming in different regions in India (Orissa, Himachal Pradesh, Sunderbans etc). The film was screened for different groups including Udayachal Highschool and Udayachal Primary School teachers and Godrej employee throughout the day followed by a thought provoking discussion about combating Global Climate Change.
15th February : Teachers training program
SPGMEC in collaboration with WWF, Mumbai had organized a full day workshop on Global climate change on 15th February. Twentyfive teachers from different schools from the various parts of Mumbai had participated in this interactive program.
Presentations on Global Climate Change and how to combat this change were made by Dr. Maya Mahajan from SPGMEC and Dr. Goldin Quadros from WWF. This issue and possible solutions were discussed in detail through different games and activities.
The program ended with a nature trail in the lush green mangrove forest conserved by Godrej and a visit to marine aquarium.
Environmental Art awards : Woman of Substance - 2008 (8th March 2008)
Dr. Maya Mahajan, from Mangrove Section was awarded with Woman of Substance 2007-2008 by the Young Environmentalists Programme at the Environmental Arts Awards function for her contribution to Environment protection through education, public awareness, research and conservation of Mangroves.
The function was held on the 8th of March 2008 ie on International Women’s Day at the Gopal Sharma International school Powai Vihar.
The painting competition on the environment subject also was organised at the same venue Dumb/ deaf and differently-abled school children were also encouraged and invited to participate on a common platform. Udayachal High School and Primary School students participated in the competition.
Participation in National Conference on Mangroves of India held in Bangalore - February 2008
Dr. Maya Mahajan and Mr. Hemant Karkhanis participated in the National workshop on Mangroves in India: Biodiversity, protection and Environmental services, which was held in Bangalore on 7th and 8th February 2008. Participants of the workshop were from various background including, scientists, mangrove experts, forest officials, Director, MoEF, NGOs and researchers from Academic institutes from various parts of India. Dr Maya presented a paper titled ‘A Model Mangrove Conservation Initiative in Mumbai by Soonabai Pirojsha Godrej Marine Ecology Centre’. Presentation and Mangrove Conservation work done by Godrej was appreciated by everyone.
World Wetland Day Celebrations 2008
On 2nd February a Nature trail and a filmshow on Wetlands in India were organised for a Nature club of School -formed by BNHS. On Sunday, 3rd February a Nature trail was organised for BNHS Members and Godrej Employees and Colony Residents. A film on Wetlands in India (Sacred Waters) which explores the wetlands and wildlife in various parts of the India was screened after the Nature trail.
On 2nd February (in the afternoon) we participated in the conference on Conservation and Management of Wetlands with special Focus on Thane Creek, which was organised by Enviro-Vigil (an NGO), Thane Municipal Corporation and Indian Association of Aquatic Biologist and a presentation on Godrej Mangrove Centre and its activities was made.