Our Mission


Canalpy (CanAlappuzha) is an initiative taken by the citizens of Alappuzha or Alleppey, Kerala to reclaim the canals of the town. With the tagline of “Canals are not drains”, it strives to clean, sustain and inspire the people to take care of their surroundings and make a difference to society!


Present Scenario

The grace with which Alappuzha greets each one of its tourists is a globally discussed phenomena. Squeezed between the Vembanad Lake and the glorious Arabian Sea, Alappuzha is a luscious geographical location that caters to the local population and tourist population alike. The picturesque canals of Alappuzha functioned as one of the crucial infrastructures for the operation of the local economy. Unfortunately, the legacy of canals faded away with the introduction of road transportation. However, the importance of Canals has reached its pinnacle today. The residents of Alappuzha has decided to lead this movement, to revive the legacy.


the story of canalpy

Canalpy is about constant efforts towards awareness, sensitization, mobilization of citizens and local stakeholders . The change (preserving, protecting the commons) that we are aiming at through our campaign, does not happen overnight. It needs continuous engagement and contribution from people from different walks of life at various levels. The sequence of the programmes listed below is a result of the outcome of previously held events.

Past Canalpy

Winter School

27 November – 04 December 2017

The purpose of Winter School – 2017 (November 27th – December,4th 2017) was to conduct a field based study to understand the water and sanitation problems, especially the pollution in Alappuzha canals to devise a mitigation plan. It also provided a platform to students to interact with and learn from experts, practitioners and local people and goes beyond classroom learning to understand the complexities of waste water and sanitation issues.


08 09 December 2017

The WATSAN Survey was held  by 200 students from SN College Cherthala, SM College cherthala, SD college Alappuzha and CUSAT engineering college Pulinkunnu. The team surveyed about seven wards ALIYAMARAM, POONTHOPPU, MUNICIPAL Office, ASRAMAM, MANNATHU, MULLATHUVALAPPU, MUNICIPAL STADIUM through which two major canals (AS and Commercial) in Alappuzha municipality pass through.

CUCEK Survey

12 — 14 jANUARY 2018

The CUCEK survey was conducted to collect geographical data and information on the waste management practices of the people in the pilot area. It was done completely via smart phone application ODK Collect with the use of two different survey questionnaires, The civil and the household. The CUCEK survey was conducted by the civil engineering students of CUCEK led by their principal Dr. Sunilkumar N.

MSW Survey

10 March 2018

20 MSW students from Assumption College, Changanacherry and 24 Kudumbashree workers from Alappuzha participated in the survey. With the involvement of Kudumbasree workers who went along for the survey, the households participated readily.


Summer School 2018

A joint initiative of IIT Bombay and KILA, the Summer School 2018 was held as two batches from
May 6 th to May 25 th . The theme was “Rejuvenation of Alappuzha Canals: Decentralised Solid and
Liquid Waste Management”. More than 300 students from varied disciplinary backgrounds of
Civil/Environmental Engineering, Social Sciences, Architecture, Planning and Social Work from all
over India participated in the Summer School.
Purpose of Summer School 2018
Winter school-2017 helped in identifying practices and access to services in water, sanitation and
solid waste at household level; and waste hotspots, encroachments in the major canals. (more…)

Canalpy Partners


Established in 1958 Indian Institute of Technology – Bombay (IITB) ia an autonomous institute and a deemed university. It is guided by the IIT Council — a common apex body for all IITs-established by the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India.

IIT Bombay Website


Centre for Technology Alternatives for Rural Areas (CTARA), of IITB is the key initiator of
the Winter and Summer School programmes. CTARA was established in 1985, for the
purpose of responding to the technological needs in rural areas. Both Centre for Policy Studies (CPS) and CTARA provided academic support and overall guidance for the Winter and Summer School Programmes.

CPS Website
CTARA Website


Kerala Institute of Local Administration (KILA), an autonomous institution functioning for the Local governments in Kerala, provided overall support for various initiatives including funding for the forthcoming Summer School-2018

KILA Website


CDD Society (Consortium for DEWATS Dissemination Society) (Bangalore) and Inspiration (Cochin) are partners for decentralised technological interventions. CDD Society, not for profit organisation, works to promote decentralised sanitation solutions across the country. They have setup India’s first dedicated Faecal Sludge Treatment Plant in Devanahalli,Bangalore. Inspiration, with over 20 years of experience in the field of ecology and economy sensitive designs and constructions, has completed over 500 projects

Inspiration Website


Cochin University College of Engineering Kuttanad (CUCEK) is a local partner in conducting various academic exercises including civil survey of canals and drains in Alappuzha town.

Cucek Website

Light It Up

Light It Up is our green event partner for the IIT Bombay-Kila Summer School 2018 and provided various installations onsite

Light It Up Website

Canalpy Reach

  • Strong stakeholder partnerships with Municipal Council, Ward Councilors, Youth Organizations, and Educational Institutions (students and teachers) have been developed through our initiative
  • So far, we have been able to create drainage network (canals and drains of total ~13km)  maps through smart tools aided community mapping.
  • We have been able to create a data repository of more than 85 variables pertaining to water, sanitation, solid waste services and practices.


students have been trained using smart tools 

ODKcollect was used to collect data as part of household survey and OSM (OpenstreetMap) was used for tracing the drains and geo-tagging the hot spots of solid/ liquid waste dumping. Students were given training on portable water quality assessment kits.



establishments have been surveyed

Establishments including Organisations, Commercial Properties and Households of Alappuzha have been surveyed  as part of the Canalpy initiative



kudumbasree women collaboration

Kudumbashree women were chosen due to their familiarity with the area, households and pollution hotspots. To know more about this initiative, please visit the link

The Canalpy Team

Dr. T.M Thomas Issac,
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