This Delhi-based non-profit focuses on two UN sustainable development goals
Perminder Singh Malik has been active in the social work space for long. After being part of the Young Indians initiative by the Confederation of Indian Industry for the last seven years and receiving the Community Service Award from the Delhi Minorities Commission, Perminder knew he wanted to set up a non-profit.
“The satisfaction that I got from these activities motivated me to register my efforts as a non-profit,” Perminder tells SocialStory. “I wanted to make a larger impact by streamlining processes.”
Perminder founded Scope For Change in February last year with the intention to motivate people to be part of the change they wish to see in society.
Scope For Change celebrated its first anniversary on World NGO Day last month.
“All activities at Scope For Change are accomplished by engaging our local community members so that they feel empowered and uplifted,” says Perminder.
At present, the NGO operates in Delhi-NCR, and Sector-40, Gurugram. It is trying to implement and sustain projects in Delhi-NCR and then expand for greater impact.
Scope For Change is currently working in two areas: education (United Nations Sustainable Development or UN-SDG Goal 4) and environment (UN-SDG 13).
Under Mission Prakriti, the NGO has conducted plantation drives in collaboration with local residents’ welfare associations (RWA), the Municipal Corporation of Gurugram and South Delhi Municipal Corporation. It has planted more than 300 plants at three locations: Sector-40, Gurugram, and Tilak Nagar and Subhash Nagar Chowk park in Delhi.
As part of the education SDG, the non-profit is running a project called Gyaan Ganga through which it is collecting old and new unused books from individuals, institutions, schools, and publishers to donate them to underprivileged students, either through associated NGOs or directly.
“So far, we have collected more than 3,000 books and donated 277 to Harmony House, Gurugram,” says Perminder. “We are building our inventory so that we can provide students the books when schools resume.”
Although the NGO wanted to start its activities earlier last year, the COVID-19 pandemic needed immediate attention. So volunteers of Scope For Change distributed dry ration and perishable food items to construction workers in Tilak Nagar. They also donated about 2,200 reusable masks to the Delhi government-run Guru Gobind Singh Hospital for the safety of frontline workers.
According to Perminder, 2,577 people have been impacted directly and 66,000 indirectly because of the trees planted by his NGO. Young Indians, Delhi, has also been supporting Mission Prakriti. The non-profit's book donation project drew praise from Harmony House.
“We appreciate their volunteered time and effort for our children. Their commitment, dedication, love, and compassion for Harmony House is commendable and brought much happiness to our children and staff. Their donation will enrich the lives of our children,” Harmony House said in a statement.
Scope For Change is also running a fundraiser called “Pustak se hi Shiksha” on the crowdfunding platform Milaap to raise Rs 1 lakh.
“So far, we have raised Rs 49,108,” Perminder says. “We are approaching corporates and one of them has already committed for the funding.”
Challenges and plans
Availability of funds to execute initiatives and activities has been a challenge for the NGO, says Perminder. Logistics and infrastructure requirements have been another hurdle.
The NGO plans to minimise pollution and combat global warming. For the period 2021-23, it wants to focus on reducing the carbon footprint by planting more than 6,000 saplings of different varieties on school campuses, panchayat office premises, community areas, and parks in Delhi-NCR with the help of municipal corporations, RWAs and the horticulture department.
“To decrease the carbon footprint by planting more plants, we are also planning to geotag them on Google Earth,” says Perminder. “This way the donor can know the location and status/progress of the plant for which he/she has contributed.”
Scope For Change also plans to make schools more sustainable by helping reduce waste generation through its sustainability audits.
Also in the pipeline is an extensive water conservation and wastewater management system in schools that will involve students, teachers, and other staff.
Perminder and his team are also organising webinars on waste management during the pandemic.
“Our objective is to create awareness about waste generation and segregation,” he says. “We want to educate people about government initiatives such as Swachh Bharat Abhiyan and waste disposal guidelines.”
During the 2021-23 period, the NGO is planning to donate 50,000 books to needy students across the country. “For this, we are planning to align with various college societies, interns, and volunteers,” Adds Perminder.
Edited by Lena Saha