Chennai: Six students from MCTM Chidambaram Chettyar International school, Mylapore, has made not only their school and the neighbourhood proud but also the entire State as they emerged as the finalists in Global Social leaders competition held for school students internationally.
Global Social Leaders is a programme by Future Foundation and Wellington Leadership Institute that brings together young people from across the world to make a social change on the global scale. The competition is held among school students every year to create positive social change in their communities.
Totally 848 teams took part in the competition this year from 86 countries Out of that 100 managed to reach the semi-final and from that Team Futuretastic emerged as one of the top 5 projects in the final round. The competition was won by The Shri Ram School, Moulsari.
The six students were Santhosh, Sruthi, Smrithi, Sivapriya, Loshini and Madhav, all studying class eight. Speaking about their project, Smrithi said, “Our team’s name is Team Futuretastic which is a combination of Future and Fantastic. Out of the topics given, we chose health and well being and named our project healthtastic. The main reason for choosing health is because right from the water we consume to the food everything is adulterated today. Also, people consume a lot of junk foods which spoils our health. So we decided to create awareness about eating natural foods. We highlighted about how the rice, white sugar, iodised salt, refined oil and even the purified water that we consume do not have any healthy minerals in it through various projects. Even we have to avoid aluminium utensils and instead start using iron utensils for better health. We also touched upon the need for practising alternative medicines for our well being through this project.”
To let more people know about it they also organised an activity in their school where they gave an awareness campaign to the students by introducing them to traditional foods like sathu maavu laddu, pori urundai, kozhakattai and other healthy foods apart from distributing buttermilk. “We also went to Paatshala Montessori school to give awareness to the students.”
It was Jhansi, mother of Shruthi and Smrithi who lent a helping hand to Team Futuretastic. She was the one who suggested them this topic and speaking about it she said, “When we came to know about the competition, I thought it was in a very high level and doubted whether my kids will be able to compete in it but they themselves formed a group and showed eagerness to participate. Since I am interested in natural foods and alternative medicines I suggested this topic. It is important for the kids of this generation to know about the traditional and healthy practices that we once followed. If they get exposed to this, then in future they can retrieve back the old practices and once again we can go back to the healthy lifestyle.”
What all the participants need to do was to upload their experiment videos in youtube by creating a channel and should submit their projects to GSL. The team also credited Santhosh as he edited the videos on his own using a software.
Asked what they learnt from the project Sivapriya and Santhosh were quick to admit that they became aware about the traditional and healthy methods to live only through this project. “It was an eye opener and with this we also created an impact in our homes as they have started using Chekku oil and have also started avoiding aluminium utensils for cooking,” says Santhosh.
Team Futuretastic now aims to win the competition next year and will soon start their preparation towards it. “Next year we are planning to do some project related to environment. Whatever we do, we are planning to set the project as an example to the whole community,” they say in unison.