Every story is an illustration of how the so-called beneficiaries were the change agents, the discard were not donations but a resource to trigger the change. Be it the story where the women in Champaran quit their employment in liquor factories and got engaged in making “Sujnis” (hand-made quilts) from scraps of cloth that would otherwise be wasted; or the one where the women of Langoti village in Khandwa, MP dug a well with basic tools in the time of a drought. In all instances, Goonj initiatives such as “Cloth for Work” provided much needed resources like clothes and footwear, organized from collected urban discard.
Each of these 25 stories in this first volume, has been carefully researched, documented, written and presented to highlight a marked change in pattern and not a stand-alone activity or incident. A story on bridges highlights how bridges have been made all over the country; from Bihar to Assam to Odisha to Uttarakhand etc. It shares substantial evidence around the universal applicability of the idea: that discard of the cities can be a powerful resource for development work and that people in the villages, irrespective of geography, ethnicity, education etc. have and can make bridges for themselves, with their own hard work, wisdom and resources.