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Project STARS, a TERI-Dempo partnership is working towards encouraging schools to practice the principles of sustainability by focusing on its environmental and social performance – both tied together with a strong cultural thread. As part of this initiative, Sharada Mandir School, Miramar was supported to phase out their conventional lighting system with LED based lighting. The facility was inaugurated by Mr.Shrinivas Dempo, Chairman, Dempo Group of Companies in the presence of Dr.Pramod Pathak, Member Secretary, Goa Energy Development Agency (GEDA), officials from TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute), Dempo Group and the school students and management.

Project STARS, (Sustainability Tracking, Action and Reporting in Schools)consolidates the TERI-DEMPO partnership by carrying forward and building upon the work carried under the previous TERI-Dempo initiative, “The Vasudeva V. Dempo Climate Change Awareness Programme for Goan School Children 2010-2012”. This unique partnership between TERI’s Goa Centre and V. S. Dempo Holdings Pvt. Ltd (DEMPO) is in the nature of a three year intensive education and action programme (2013-2016) on sustainable schools in Goa.

The project works with a cross section of 10 schools across the state that was a part of the earlier initiative in 2010-2012.Sharada Mandir is one of the selected ten based on their solid commitment and performance in the earlier climate change awareness project and a range of other environmental issues.

Said Chief Guest Mr.Shrinivas Dempo, Chairman, Dempo Group of Companies at the inaugural of the facility, “Climate change is a matter of immense global concern. We have the ideal partners TERI who have partnered with the Dempo Group to put into process sustainable initiatives, such as the one being inaugurated today. We need to lead by example and that is what we have don’t today through this initiative which will reduce the carbon footprint of the school. I congratulate the school on this wonderful, energy saving initiative”.

Added Mr. Oscar Gonsalves,Administrator, Sharada Mandir School, “We thank Project STARS for helping our efforts to become an energy efficient school. The energy consumption of the school for extremely high. With the installation of LED lights we have managed to considerable reduce energy consumption and subsequently our electricity bills,  conserve energy and reduce our carbon footprint as well. ”

Said Guest of Honour, Dr.Pramod Pathak, Member Secretary, Goa Energy Development Agency (GEDA), “We need to adopt small changes that can go a long way in conserving energy. Installation of LED fixtures is one such initaive.”

Sharing an overview of Project STARS, Shabana Kazi, Associate Fellow(Sustainable Development Outreach and Youth Education,TERI), and project STARS coordinator, said“project STARS focuses on the sustainability performance of schools across the environmental and socio-cultural domains with a strong focus on the core sustainability areas of the environment. It hence intervened by supporting the school in its environmental friendly aspirations by reducing its carbon footprint generated from lighting. Awareness and sensitization workshops on natural resource conservation and environmental auditing have been organized to bolster the physical interventions here.’’ The event was compered by Ms.Saltanat Kazi, Consultant, Sustainable Development Outreach and Youth Education, TERI.

The school community at the 10 member schools are the direct beneficiaries (approximately 10,000 persons) of the resources created under the project, as the interventions reach out to a large section of the school, including teachers, support staff, parents and the local community.