April 1 2014

Environmental Awareness Through Art

EnvConcours1Educating young people about environmental issues is widely acknowledged to be a key factor in protecting the environment, now and in the future. Karuna-Shechen is partnering with four students from the University of Bodhgaya in India to raise children’s awareness of the environment through inspiring their creativity in a drawing contest.

With crayons, erasers, and pencil sharpeners in hand, these young artists from eighteen regional schools give free rein to their imaginations. The children choose one of two themes for their drawings: “The neighborhood of your dreams,” or “What is a clean city?”. Karuna-Shechen provides all the art supplies and prizes.

The teachers are part of the university’s Sustainable Development program and are interning with Karuna-Shechen. They teach the children about the importance of protecting the environment and suggest practical ways they can help. The topics are adapted to a young audience and include the harmful effects of plastic on our environment, the importance of using bins instead of littering, and how to make a difference.

The children are bursting with inspiration and their drawings are filled with innovative images of wells, garbage bins, spotless schools, houses with flower and vegetable gardens, clear blue skies, and paved roads. Their drawings reflect their aspirations for a greener way of life and a better living environment. Three of the best drawings from each school are chosen and the artists receive a small prize. Their work will be exhibited at the Shechen Medical Center in Bodhgaya.

This is one of the many projects Karuna-Shechen is initiating in India for community development, education, and the environment.