October 20, 2015
This NGO has no website, Facebook page or group. Yet, the founder of ‘Pasumai Desam’ – 45-year old S. Rajendar – continues to work quietly and tirelessly towards achieving his one mission, which is to make Coimbatore a better place.
An engineer by profession, he believes that one of the ways to achieve this is to plant more trees to attract rainfall, thus make the surrounding area look and feel beautiful.
“I formed the NGO Pasumai Desam Trust in 2011, in order to carry out the activities that would make our environment cleaner and that would ultimately make this a better place to live in,” says Rajendar.
He not only realised that there was a serious shortfall of trees in the city, but also that this shortage led to the city receiving lesser levels of rainfall. This prompted him to set up ‘One Tree One Day’ mission.
Starting from March 22 last year till March 22 this year, Rajendar identified the areas in the city that needed green cover. He then used funds from his own pocket and along with his volunteers started planting a variety of trees, especially those trees that can attract rainfall between March 22 last year and March 22 this year.
“We planted 1,044 trees with wire mesh tree guards in areas like Sundarapuram, Gandhipuram, Gandhipark, Ondipudur, Podanur, the barren place opposite of VOC Park and Malamichampatti,” Rajendar says. This tree planting initiative coincided with World Water Day that is celebrated on March 22 every year.
Rajendar also tells us that Vanitha Mohan, founder of NGO Siruthuli, Dr. Vijaykarthikeyan Coimbatore Corporation Commissioner, and actor Vijay, are a few who planted saplings to celebrate their birthday that year.
Yet another project of this NGO that received tremendous support was its initiative to clean the water tank in Kuruchi in 2014. The water tank that supplies water to residents and commercial establishments in and around Kuruchi area remained dry, unclean and unfit for use. Rajendar decided to put this water tank to use. He joined hands with 40 social service organizations, gathered about 2,000 volunteers and the entire team set on the task to clean the Kuruchi water tank. It took the group a good three months and a lot of hard work to ensure that the tank can be used.
Post their cleaning effort, the city was blessed with rains that filled the Kuruchi water tank to its capacity. Today, the tank is full and continues to supply water to many homes and commercial establishments located in and around Kuruchi area.
Other areas that Pasumai Desam Trust plans to work on, include spreading the awareness of health and personal hygiene among people, especially school children. Its founder tells us that he plans to visit schools, especially Government schools in the city, to educate the children on the importance of maintaining a healthy body and a clean mind.