Picture a beach, What do you see?
Breathtaking sunsets, White sand, Crystal clear blue water and you taking a walk and breathing in the bliss surrounding you.
But hey, what’s that under your feet? A plastic wrapper, walk a few more steps and oh, empty beer can with some cigarette butts in it and as you walk further, you find much more filth lying around on the beach, you take a deep breath, swallow your irritation and head back to your hotel room agitated.
Yes, most beaches in Goa are facing this issue and it can be a major vacation spoiler, to say the least. Being an avid nature lover myself, I used to keep Goa as the last option when it came to planning a beach holiday. This might be a little uncomfortable for all the Goa lovers out there but it’s the sad truth. I admit that even I am, directly and indirectly, responsible for it and was probably shying away from the responsibility that I have towards it until I got to work on a project called ‘Tera Mera Beach’ which aims to educate tourists and locals of Goa to clean up the beaches using Drum Circles and art for 150 days. Doing a Drum Circle on the beach every day with more than 25000 people over the course of five months was a very exciting idea but it was only after I started my research when I started getting a deeper insight of the issue and really started to feel connected to the cause.
Customizing the drum circles for this activity was challenging because I was skeptical about making it too preachy. After all, people don’t come to Goa for that. So it had to be delivered to them in a playful manner and after the first few sessions, I could see how group drumming managed to do that perfectly. It made the participants more receptive to the message in the activity and also made them feel accomplished after engaging in a cleanup activity while others motivated them by drumming and singing for them.
The most powerful part of this campaign is that its making people realize that this is not a blame game and if there is any way to change things, it is by changing the self and the kind of difference an individual can make.
I am really looking forward to the remaining 134 days and 134 drum circles. Come see me in Goa and take the pledge of cleanliness with me!
– Aman Joshi