Waste Warriors Dharamsala


Model Ward Program


We have partnered with Dharamshala Municipal Corporation and started our first Model Ward Program in Ward 7, Secretariat. The ward became the first ward out of the city’s 17 wards to begin segregating waste at source. Our team goes door-to-door to raise awareness amongst families and households and also conducts community workshops.

We've also identified Swachhta Ke Sipahi, aka active citizens, who are composting their organic waste and effectively segregating waste at source, among other initiatives including convincing their neighbors, in order to help us transform their communities.

We then connect households in this ward with the Corporation's contracted waste hauler, who pick up the segregated dry waste from these families on a regular basis.



Our government partner includes:




Clean Business Program


The tourism industry is huge in Dharamshala, so we're training businesses in Ward 7 to improve their waste management by helping them to adopt cleaner and greener practices. We’ve partnered with HP Tourism and Dharamshala Municipal Corporation who have authorized us to share their policies during our training.

We enroll businesses, including cafes, restaurants, and hotels and conduct staff training on the program’s five cleanliness criteria: 1) Segregating Waste, 2) Ensuring Responsibility, 3) Offering Alternatives to Customers, 4) Composting Food Waste, and 5) Raising Awareness.

Our team also distributes awareness-raising materials to businesses according to their needs. We follow up with every business on a weekly basis and help them achieve all the criteria to become a Clean Business, certified by HP Tourism.

Our government partners include:




Zero Waste Destination


Our roots are in Dharamshala's Bhagsunag, where many Indian and foreign tourists come to visit Dharamkot, hike to Gallu checkpoint and Triund campsite, and enjoy the beauty of Bhagsu Waterfalls. But tons of waste is generated by hundreds of thousands of such people every year.


In the past, our teams and volunteers have worked to clean-up Triund and Bhagsu waterfall every week, and have supported the Forest Dept’s efforts to ban camping at Triund and to activate a check post at Gallu to remind tourists to bring back all plastic that they take up and to confiscate alcohol. It is very hard to clean up and bring back tons of broken glass bottles that people throw away at Triund.

Tourism had completely stopped in the high tourist footfall areas of Upper Dharamshala due to COVID-19, many food and hospitality businesses have now reopened to tourists who are quickly filling up the streets and trails. Although we’ve stopped our waste collection operations in Bhagsu in mid-2020, we still continue to support our active Bhagsu and Dharamkot community residents and business owners to organize cleanups. We also have over 100 public-use metal dustbins that are emptied and maintained by one of our Green Workers in Bhagsu.





Swachh Yatra


Public transport in Dharamshala includes private bus operators for local stops and inter-state volvo buses, and multiple taxi unions with over 1000 taxis plying the city. Our Swachh Yatra program aims to increase awareness and responsibility amongst travellers, including not littering while they are on the move.

Our program was realigned as per the COVID directives from DC Kangra and Regional Transportation Office to sensitize all transport staff in Dharamshala about hygiene, sanitation, and waste management.

We have trained bus drivers and conductors of all private local buses, volvos, and Himachal Road Transportation Corporation (HRTC) buses about solid waste management. We have also partnered with the Chief Medical Officer to deliver training on hygiene and sanitation, with the local branch of The Indian Red Cross Society providing us space to conduct workshops.



Our government partners include:




Swachhta Ki Pathshala



In 2019, Waste Warriors Dharamsala launched a waste management education initiative, Swachhta Ki Pathshala, in line with the Prime Minister’s “Swachh Bharat” campaign.

The idea is to integrate children as agents of change in transforming the global waste problem. Waste Warriors Dharamsala has partnered with the state Pollution Control Board, Smart City Dharamshala, and the Centre for Urban and Regional Excellence, aligning mutual objectives and deliverables to achieve the combined vision of engaging the next generation in sustainable waste management.

The program has been designed in such a way that the students not only gain knowledge through the interactive session but they also learn how to transform the knowledge into practice with the help of workshops where they actually get involved in the activities.


Our government partners since 2019 include:


Thank you to HT Parekh Foundation for supporting all our programs listed above
and our Dharamsala team since 2017!




Building Dharamsala’s First Material Recovery Facility
& Working To Improve Waste Workers Lives & Livelihood.


Our Objectives for This Program Are To:


  • Implement and improve an integrated solid waste management system that focuses on waste pickers and informal scrap dealers by formalizing them into the collection, segregation, and recycling streams.

  • Improve the socio-economic conditions and improve the livelihoods of waste pickers in the city, through Self-Help Groups, training workshops, medical camps, and other forms of recognition.


This program has been supported by
BestSeller Foundation
since April 2020.


With the support of Dharamsala Municipal Corporation and Smart City Ltd., we are building a fully-functioning Material Recovery Facility to ensure the effective collection, sorting, and processing of a portion of the city's waste.

We are aiming to create exposure visits, organize training sessions, and advocate for social benefits for waste pickers, and to train waste collectors to activate and motivate communities to practice waste segregation in order for them to take leadership and sustainable ownership of the program.

We also aim to standardize market rates of all resalable recyclable categories through the MRF. This would help waste pickers, citizens, scrap dealers to walk in and sell their waste in a transparent manner.



Health Camps for Waste Pickers & Families


Communities of informal waste pickers and the makeshift slums that they live in are amongst the most underprivileged and underserved areas in most cities. Apart from raising awareness amongst city residents and businesses, we also wanted to do what we could in our capacity to improve the livelihoods of waste pickers and the lives of their families.

As part of this program in partnership with BestSeller Foundation, we collaborated with the Kangra Branch of Indian Red Cross Society, the Dharamshala Municipal Corporation, and the District Collector's Office. We conducted 4 health camps in 4 different waste pickers communities in Dharamshala. Healthcare professionals and medicines were provided by Red Cross.



Training and Mobilizing Formalized Waste Workers


Dharamshala Municipal Corporation has contracted 3 waste haulers for door-to-door waste collection services. We aim to conduct trainings for these door-to-door waste workers and distribute protective and safety gear to those who have not received them from their supervisors.

The municipality, under the National Urban Livelihood Mission, had formed Self Help Groups for sanitation workers, which have become inactive. We aim to activate these existing SHGs and provide trainings and protective gears to the enrolled members and sensitize the towards the importance of secondary segregation and recycling in order to reduce the amount of waste ending up in the city's landfill.