Though widely spoken climate change is still a matter of concern at large. There is need for both voice and action when we look at curtailing human activities that exacerbate the weather. ‘Talk of the Town’ today is glad to have RJ Varsha Raikwar, radio jockey with Radio Bundelkhand; who has been successful by her perseverance in shaping up the mindset of people towards a green tomorrow.
Born & brought up in Niwari, a city of Madhya Pradesh; Varsha has seen and experienced the tough life every woman faces in Bundelkhand. The plight of women walking miles just to fetch water for their daily use touched Varsha life and she decided to decode their pain through her vocal skills.
This motivated her to work in the field of water conservation from a young age. My first ever effort was to use the kitchen's waste water for gardening. The outcome of her act caught the neighbour’s movitation and they started walking on Varsha’s footsteps.
When she started working with Radio Bundelkhand 90.4 FM, an initiative by Development Alternatives Group, she realised the power of broadcasting and used it to share her personal experience with the entire community spread over 200 villages. She made efforts to promote sustainable & environment friendly practices like- growing less water intensive crops, use sprinkler and drip irrigation, collecting and conserving rainwater, plantation, etc.
For areas outside the channels' reach, she took the radio to them along with her team to spread the word. Due to the community's patriarchal mind-set, it was challenging for her to be even heard. She realised that only with continuous efforts and achieving results, the community will accept her voice and vision.
In September 2021, under the United Nations #WeTheChange Now campaign, she was awarded the title of Young Environmental Activist and Youth Climate leader, along with 16 others in India.
In April 2022, New Zealand High Commission recognised her as a young change maker under the campaign #SheTheChange2022
NatGeo India has featured her story along with other climate change makers on the occasion of Earth Day 2022.
“I may belong to a small place, but thanks to Radio Bundelkhand and Development Alternatives, I aim to become the voice of Climate Change in India. I believe positive change has begun but still there is a lot to be done. Not only Bundelkhand, but the entire world has to work together to mitigate climate” said Varsha.
The Talk of the Town is thankful to RJ Varsha Raikwar for speaking to us and sharing her views about the environment change and it impact. We are also thankful to Mr. Hiral Shah for articulating and drafting his conversation with RJ Varsha.