Featuring Chitra Sharma
What are you currently doing (job/study)? your interests?
I am working as a Principal Engineer with Pramati Technologies. My interests include learning new skills, trekking, running, cycling and undoing the environmental damage that we humans have done.
When & How did you get started with CTC?
I joined CTC when I moved to Chennai in Feb 2014 after marriage. My husband knew that I am interested in environmental and outdoor activities and told me about CTC. The planning for CCC-6 had just started and I was very excited to be a part of it. I had attended my first CCC-6 meeting at Peter’s place. That marked the beginning of my journey with CTC.
What are the activities of CTC that you are involved in?
As part of CCC I have performed flash-mobs in different places in the city (malls, IT parks, beaches) to create awareness about the harmful effects of using plastic in everyday lives. I was part of conducting awareness sessions for school children about the harmful effects of using plastic and how to avoid it in daily life. I have also been part of plantation events with Ainthinai, cleaning activities, weekday treks. I have participated in Chennai trail marathon and Jawadhu hill running.
What will you say has been your biggest achievement when it comes along with CTC?
I would rather want to talk about my biggest feeling of satisfaction. The passion, dedication and eagerness of young kids to dig holes, to lift and move the saplings, to plant them and cover them up with soil and the eagerness to bring forth a change in this world during a plastic awareness session gave me a feeling of satisfaction that will keep me motivated and hopeful of a better world.
Share any one of the CTC Best moments you had !
I have had so many unforgettable experiences with CTC that it is hard to mention one. My first half marathon - Chennai Trail Marathon, my first 25 km run in Jawadhu, my first short swim in Ottiyambakkam, the first time my home compost was ready. Every activity has taught me something, has helped me transform into a better version of myself, given me invaluable and loving friends and made me a more confident person.
How do you manage your work life balance ?
Managing work life balance requires planning ahead, discipline and focus to be able to add progress every day. A typical week day starts with running/cycling or zumba giving me the energy and enthusiasm for the rest of the day. Weekends are for pursuing long term goals and activities that I am passionate about.
Any specific goals/dream that you are working on ?
My dream is to use technology to solve global environmental issues such as waste management and climate change. Currently as a first step I am learning the path towards self sufficiency by home composting and growing small plants for daily use spices. The bigger next step is to implement the same in my organisation to recycle the generated waste. The final step would be implementing waste management at a large scale, something similar to what Sweden has done.
How has your life changed after joining this CTC ?
- I did my first ever trek with CTC which was Nagalapuram trek. This was the beginning of a new found interest, trekking.
- The ability to bring about change at the grassroots level - young children.
- Get your hands dirty and start a task that seems unachievable, only to see a growing number of hands and soon, a task that is completed - CCC.
Did anything change after marriage?
Marriage has accelerated my growth towards pursuing my interests in life. Having a like minded partner makes it simpler to do what one likes.
Share some of your cycling that you did in the CTC?
I did 40k cycling for Chennai costal cleanup - 7. The ride was organised to promote CCC-7. It was a great experience riding along with fellow CTCians.
We have seen you in leading many of volunteering and how does this helps you outside CTC ?
By volunteering and participating in CTC events I learned leadership, organising and mentoring skills. I trained women colleagues in my office to run their first Pinkathon last year followed by organising a Cyclathon event in my office this March.