Bodhgaya Recycling & Eco Training Center

Update 04 April 2017

We urgently need your support to complete this project!   

Costs have pushed us slightly over budget so we are appealing for additional funds to complete this project.

Status: 82% Complete Overall $22,316 still needed   >   Please help and make a donation.



Funding needed                                Dollars  
Roof 2,331   
Upper Floor 5,799   
Solar Power 1,801   
Gates 332   
Downstairs Multi-functional Hall 3,433   
Water harvesting & tank system 2,700   
Training 3,772   
Documentation 1,078   
Printing 1,070   
Total $ 22,316 Rps 1,443,021
(For a more detailed breakdown of costs please contact us)


This innovative project, aimed at transforming awareness of environmental issues through education and demonstrating examples of low cost, effective and practical solutions, can be adopted by local and international communities in other parts of India and all over the world.

We can only make this happen with your support! Help and make a donation



Bodhgaya, India - UNESCO world heritage site and sacred Buddhist pilgrimage city - the place of the Buddha’s Enlightenment, is visited by thousands of Buddhists, Hindus, and tourists who come on pilgrimage from all over the world, making Bodhgaya a uniquely international and culturally diverse part of India.

Also home to a local village population of around 40,000 Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, and Christians, this treasured world heritage site is plagued by enormous amounts of plastic pollution, among other challenges that threaten the overall health and sustainability of the local ecology, economy, and community.

Sacred Earth Trust has launched an exciting project to transform the city of Bodhgaya's plastic pollution problem into a sustainable building solution. Through implementing low-cost, leading-edge recycling and building technologies, this project will create a Recycling and Eco-Training Center out of compressed plastic blocks and become a catalyst in the region for transforming problematic waste into vital resources and job opportunities.

We can only make this happen with your support! Help and make a donation

The Problem

The large number of tourists that come through Bodhgaya each year and the lack of any recycling system results in endemic plastic pollution that plagues local economy, health, and environment of Bodhgaya, villagers and tourists alike. Local children of the Dalit (lower caste) villages work through the night and lack educational opportunities or options for sustainable livelihoods. The health of the local ecology is also suffering greatly, and only continues to deteriorate.



The Solution

We have discovered a brilliant, low-cost way to turn this problem into a leading-edge solution by utilizing the plastic waste and compressing it into blocks that can be used as a medium for sustainable building construction!

Plastic waste is collected, cleaned, recycled, and then compressed into blocks to be used as building blocks. This proven appropriate technology solution pioneered in Haiti transforms this waste into a valuable resource. 

Past Research Proves:

  • The method of construction with the plastic blocks is earthquake resistance to scale of 8.3
  • Can withstand winds of up to 70mph
  • Has high insulation properties




Recycling and Eco-Training Center 

Utilizing this leading-edge, low cost building method, this project will lay the foundations to design and build a Recycling and Eco-Training Center in the heart of Bodhgaya to serve as a Recycling Center, as well as a vocational and sustainability educational hub. It will become a catalyzing focal point for resolving the detrimental plastic pollution problem locally in Bodhgaya, and serve as demonstration model for local, regional, and international communities.

The Recycling and Eco-Training Center will become a hub that collects and recycles plastic from the city and turns it into blocks that will be distributed and used for building and sanitation projects. The plastic building blocks can be used for construction of public toilets, roads, walls, benches, and other community needs. This reduces the need for other higher cost and less sustainable building materials such as bricks, cement, and lumber, while creating more sustainable livelihoods for local villagers.


Vocational Training

The Recycling and Eco-Training Center will also offer vocational trainings, job opportunities, and community service programs. Educational programs will include training locals on the recycled plastic block construction technologies; sustainability and permaculture design trainings; water, waste, energy, and other appropriate technologies; Seven Stages to Sustainability Community Development, and other vocational trainings such as sowing, arts, crafts, and more. The Center will also host community programs like the Village Woman's Program, the Recycling Program, the Tree Planting Program, and more. These programs will be offered for local people including local men, women, children, and youths, and for international visitors alike. The Center will also sell locally produced goods created by the local artisans and villagers.


Impact & Outcomes

  • Building a Recycling Center to address the on-going plastic issues
  • Cleaning the plastic pollution in Bodhgaya and beautifying the city
  • Developing cutting-edge sustainable building technologies
  • Providing educational and vocational trainings
  • Creating and supporting local sustainable livelihoods
  • Engaging local, national and international partners

The site will consists of:

Ground floor:

  • Sacred Earth Trust Office
  • Hall (multi-functional training space)
  • Machine room/ Kitchen space
  • Guard hut/ volunteers rooms
  • Compost toilets
  • Water management systems
  • Bio remediation plantation/ vertical gardens

Mezzanine level: (Upper floor)

  • Solar powered IT – E learning centre
  • Library for E-learning and books/(Meeting room)


As the project grows, we will be inviting community stakeholders and NGO's from all around the Himalayan region, India, other countries to learn these leading-edge recycling and building technologies, as well as other sustainability techniques and practices, which they can take back to implement in their respective regions.



Phase 1 - Materials Construction & Design: $25k       (100% Complete)

In order to get this project off the ground, we need $25k of seed money. These funds will allow us to complete the foundational steps of gathering the raw plastic materials, purchasing the compression machine, constructing the plastic blocks, and completing the design to be ready for the building construction. Throughout this process we will enroll and coordinate local villagers in a large scale gathering of plastic pollution from all over Bodhgaya. A team of local community villagers will also be trained in the process of constructing the plastic blocks for the construction of the Recycling & Eco-Training Center Building.



Phase 2 - Construction of the Building: $61k        (63% Complete - $39k spent / 22k remains)

Any additional funds we receive beyond the minimum $25k will go towards the construction of the Eco-Center Building. In Phase 2 of the project, trained local villagers proficient in the plastic block building method will utilize the plastic blocks to build the Recycling and Eco-Training Center building. This building will house the Sacred Earth Trust office, a Solar powered I.T. Centre, and a Training Room.



Phase 3 - Solar Powered IT Center, Greenhouse, Greenhouse, & Compost Toilets: $75k

Any funds we receive beyond $86k will go towards Phase 3 of the project, which is transforming the Eco-Center into a model sustainability demonstration site including:

  • Solar Powered Energy
  • Furnished IT Center 
  • Year Round Community Garden
  • Compost toilets
  • Medicinal Plant & Tea Production Green House
  • Rooftop Food Garden


We can only make this happen with your support! Please help and Make a Donation


Projects Planned After Completion of Building


Bringing awareness and community development to the surrounding area (16 slum areas).
Two areas of focus will be local community development and international collaboration.

  • For project in slums: Improve sanitation and conditions for village women by building toilets for women’s and use and maintenance through working with Self Help Groups (SHGs) in the Village. These toilets will demonstrate the and health hygiene education through school engagement; bringing international visitors and educational programs, through links with various educational establishments for engaging volunteers or to visit projects in surrounding areas.

  • Continue teacher training on how to teach environmental education via creative learning approach or developments programs, which may benefit from international support and collaborations in knowledge and skill sharing, workshops in relevant permaculture topics.

In house:

Programs in the eco centre - workshops, courses, performances, cinema.

  • Educational information dissemination - E learning digital library and fact sheets, open dialogue via web portal between children in Bodhgaya and global communities.

  • Demo learning tools in the architectural design of centre, incorporating permaculture, ecosolutions and systems

  • Audio Visual AV music and arts platform. The youth of today require more effective ways to engage their interest for learning and interaction.




Thanks to the partnership and support of United Nations Development Program UNDP, Global Environment Facility GEFSGPCEEMOEFC.




Support Us

Contributions directly fund

  • Environmental Education
  • Environmental Care
  • Training & Workshops
  • Tree Planting
  • Social Enterprise

Stay Informed

Join our Facebook group for updates from the community.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to our RSS feed for new site articles and updates.