RDF is committed to promoting sustainability and environmental awareness in its schools. A common phrase found around RDF schools is: “Do not waste a drop of water, a grain of rice, a watt of power or a piece of paper”
Three of the schools have working gardens that incorporate organic practices, such as using ash from kitchen fires as fertilizer for the plants. Children learn about greenhouse gases, the advantages of planting trees and how keeping the environment clean helps prevent diseases like malaria and dengue from spreading.
The schools also recycle. Innovative teachers routinely demonstrate how other people’s trash can be transformed into school treasures: Rice grains illustrate the diversity of crops, leaves become artistic canvases and marbles demonstrate Newton’s Three Laws of Motion. Teachers constantly make use of their environments for eco-friendly teaching aids. The schools ensure they are preserve the environment in every activity they undertake. For instance, every year idols of Lord Ganesha are brought into houses for 10 days and then immersed in water bodies as a farewell. RDF Matendla School also joined in the festivities, but in an eco-friendly manner. Vinayaka Chavithi (Lord Ganesha’s festival) is celebrated annually in the RDF schools. As a part of celebrations, the students and teachers personally craft the Ganesha idol from clay taken from the nearby ponds. This ensures that there is no pollution caused during immersion and also ensures the use of natural materials. No plastic or electric lights are used; in fact the idol is adorned with natural materials consisting of dried leaves. There are special prayers held for this occasion and even parents come to attend this spiritual occasion. RDF Matendla School has kept up this tradition for 9 years.