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Press Release

June 4, 2018

Children Cherished Learning through Storytelling Session of JICA-Supported "Mottainai Grandma Picture Book"
- Primary-School Children Learn Hygiene and Environmental Best Practices with Fun -

New Delhi, June 4, 2018: The Hindi version of Japanese Children's picture book ‘Mottainai Grandma', published in India with the support of Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) facilitated a storytelling session for over 100 primary school children at Dwarka Metro Station today. The National Book Trust (NBT) of India and Kodansha Co. Ltd., a major Japanese publishing house, organized the storytelling session, with cooperation and support of the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC), IJ Kakehashi Service Pvt. Ltd. (IJK) and JICA.

The objective of the event was to promote environmental awareness and ethics among the children and people across the society, sensitizing them in handling environmental and hygiene issues. With just a day remaining to the World Environment Day i.e. 5th June, there could not have been a better opportunity to educate children in a fun way, about the importance of environment and significance of preserving the nature.

The event was attended by nearly 150 participants including children from many schools such as Muni International School, Bal Bharti Public School, Dwarka and a few NGOs that work for underprivileged children. Some of the parents and teachers were also in attendance at the event along with the officials from DMRC, NBT, JICA, Kodansha and IJK.

Mr. Takema Sakamoto, Former Chief Representative, JICA India, said, "JICA realizes that capacity development and inculcating the behavioral change is the significant first step of the solution for environmental and hygiene issues. Teaming up with Kodansha has brought a unique opportunity for JICA to reach out to a different audience. JICA acknowledges that encouraging the children to share the spirit of ‘Mottainai' with their families and friends would bring out much needed change towards conservation of resources. The concept of ‘Mottainai' is based on the 3 R's - Reduce, Reuse, Recycle plus Respect to resources. JICA strongly believes the children need to know well that anything of value should not be wasted and should be used with careful consideration. The book will help children understand the importance of the environment and this will help build a better world."

Ms. Jaishree Sethi, Creative Director of Story Ghar and an engaging storyteller, conducted the story telling session using animated gestures to engage with the students. She talked about various environment-friendly qualities of Delhi Metro, which is the first metro train company in the world to get carbon credits under the support of JICA. The kids were hooked on to the interesting stories told during the session and took away valuable learnings about health, hygiene and thoughtful waste management.

"Motainnai Grandma" in Hindi language was first published in India in January 2018. It is a useful book especially in India, where there are not many picture books available on environment and hygiene. The concept of this book is in line with the message of Swachh Bharat Mission, and it advocates the vision of Hon'ble Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi. With JICA's assistance ‘Mottainai Grandma' series is also promoting the awareness of people across all the levels especially at the Bottom of Pyramid (BOP) and is assisting them in resolving the environment and hygiene issues.

PhotoMr. Takema Sakamoto engaging with children

PhotoThe children dancing to the song recited by the storyteller on Mottainai Grandma

PhotoMottainai Grandma books distributed to children after the storytelling session


About JICA

Established, by a specific law, as an incorporated administrative institution under the Government of Japan, the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) aims to contribute to the promotion of international cooperation, as a sole Japanese governmental agency in charge of ODA implementation. JICA is the world's largest bilateral donor agency. JICA works as a bridge between Japan and emerging countries, and provides assistance in forms of loan, grant and technical cooperation so that the emerging countries can strengthen their capabilities.

For further information, please contact:

JICA India Office
Ai Tachikawa/Vini Sharma
+91 11 49097000
Tachikawa.Ai@jica.go.jp
sharmavini.id@jica.go.jp

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