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Don Bosco Green Alliance powers its Web Portal
By Karen Laurie
Mumbai, Apr. 2. India: At a time when headlines of major news organisations focus on air pollution, the Great Pacific garbage patch, the Pacific trash vortex and the collapsing glaciers, there comes news of hope, and the Salesians of Don Bosco are leading the way in fostering this hope by adding a touch of green to a global picture being sullied by shades of grey.  
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An initiative by Salesian India, the ''Don Bosco Green Alliance'', is leading the way to teach a generation of young people, from Don Bosco institutions and organisations, throughout the world, to use our God-given natural resources in a responsible manner, in a bid to foster hope for future generations.

The Alliance, on April 1, powered its global web portal www.dbgreen.in in a bid to streamline its effort to push the green agenda and to garner more support for its eco-friendly initiatives not just in India but in foreign shores.
 
The user friendly web presence paints a pretty picture of our planet. Users will now have access to a wealth of 'green' information at the click of a button. Pictures of youth, the main stakeholders, in the Alliance are clearly apparent on the website, pointing to, and underlining with no uncertain terms, the urgent need to work together for a brighter and a cleaner future.

''Young people take up the challenge,'' reads the first-deck header that welcomes web-users. Below is text that encapsulates the mission, ''We are working to create an environment that is safe and caring for all life on the planet, while building up a new generation of environmentally committed citizens and leaders.''

For those seeking more information, the 'Who are we' tab leads you to a picture of Father Angel Fernandez Artime, the Rector Major walking amongst thousands of youth. The text below sums the main priority of the Alliance.

''Combatting pollution, reducing global warming and eliminating disposable plastic. In each of these areas, we partner with ongoing global campaigns promoted by the United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment) or other international organisations. We have set specific targets to be achieved for each of the campaigns that we engage in...''

The 'Priority Area' link underlines just why three main priority areas have been singled out. ''The environmental crisis we are presently facing is easily the biggest threat to the planet - to humans and to every species on this earth,'' it reads.

''Green Champs'' makes users aware of the clean-up drives, awareness promotion rallies and campaigns, exhibitions and competitions, exposure visits, environmental education programmes and eco clubs being undertaken by the Alliance.  

''Don Bosco Eco Concerns,'' it reads, ''an initiative by Don Bosco Tiruchy, India has been promoting Green Lifestyles in Don Bosco campuses with a specific 10 Point Green Programme. These Green Programmes are aimed at educating and empowering young people to protect and nurture the planet.''

The 10 Point Green Programme includes increasing green cover, reduction in the use of non-degradable materials, increasing the usage of renewable sources of energy, zero wastage in the campus, promotion of organic farming, home vegetable and herbal gardens, preserve and conserve water, clean and green environment, healthy organic food habits, usage of eco friendly products and environment education for all.

It must be noted that the Alliance is a growing network, with new members constantly joining. The members, besides working on the key priority areas of the Alliance, are also involved in various other environmental initiatives, based on local needs and challenges.

The 'Join the Alliance' tab offers web users an opportunity to make a difference. ''We warmly invite Don Bosco institutions (schools, colleges, training centres, youth centres, care centres, parishes) and organisations (environmental, social, cultural, pastoral) across the world to become members of the Don Bosco Green Alliance,'' a message reads. Filling a web-based form with basic information is all it takes to get started. ''At the time of registering, please state at least three such definite commitments that you would wish to make ...''

Here's our opportunity to make a difference to our planet. So, join the chorus, lend a hand, share an idea and partner with us to right the wrongs that have already been done to the sphere that we call home, Mother Earth!

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