With an aim to generate an understanding of the issues of an inverse gender ratio and depleting tree cover, as part of the global arena of women and environmental issues, Harsimrat Kaur Badal set up the Nanhi Chhaan Foundation in August 2008.
The Nanhi Chhaan Foundation seeks to use the strength and adaptability of human faith – religious; spiritual or rational – to invoke interest as well as concern about these problems and provide programs in which individuals and organizations alike can partake in creating sustainable solutions for the same.
The gender ratio in India, far from stabilizing or self-correcting, has been dropping continuously for years, standing now (as per the last Census) at 927 girls per 1000 boys. One out of 5 girl children die before attaining the age of. The impact of not recognizing the rights of the girl child is detrimental to all forms of society’s progress, both socially and economically. With increasing female feticide and female infanticide, partisan treatment between young girls and boys that often favors the latter gender has a much larger impact. There is an increase in the dropout rate of girls in education systems, violence against women and girls as well as the serious economic deprivation of women and girls access to services, skills and information that could enable them to lead just and healthy lives.
Now, we’ll shift the focus to the ecological and environment aspects of this organization. There has been rapid deforestation and clearing of land for a variety of reasons has also led to the dwindling of tree cover, causing further problems of soil erosion, loss of habitat and extreme fluctuations in weather. India’s commitment to increase our forest cover from 21% to 32% (the minimum global standard for ecological balance) has remained a distant dream, with our forest cover reducing each year by 0.1% instead of going up.