Himalayan Welfare Organization, Pahalgam (HWO) is a Non-Profit, Non-Governmental Organization based in Pahalgam, founded by its President, Mushtaq Pahalgami in March, 2008.
The Himalayan Welfare Organization (HWO) has been working for the cause of Environmental Conservation and Protection, Education, Healthcare and Promotion of Sports and Adventure Tourism in and around Pahalgam. The HWO also organizes Seminars, Awareness Camps, Information Campaigns, Demonstrations and Relief and Rehabilitation camps to promote a general culture of societal service and empathy and to challenge corruption and other agency issues in Public Institutions in the state through the use of RTI,2009 and PSGA Acts.
The Hiamalyan Welfare Organization has also recently launched the 'Save Shahkul' Campaign to help conserve and preserve the 50 Km long Shahkul or Martand Canal which commands over 9,500 acres of land. The Campaign was launched at the one day national seminar organized by the HWO at Aishmuqam on the theme 'Environmental Conservation and Sustainable Development' on the 4th of June, 2016 and attempts to rope in School Children as the main actors in environmental conservation by taking school students, sanitation workers and other concerned civil society members along to clean this canal and to go from door to door to urge and appeal to the people to stop using this canal as a drain and to build a general societal movement to stop dumping of household waste and garbage/sewage in the canal.
As part of its sanitation and clean environment drive, HWO volunteers recently collected garbage for proper disposal from Chandanwari following littering by pilgrims on the Amarnath Yatra in Chandanwari, following which the shrine board also took notice of the matter and initiated action. Mushtaq Pahalgami and the HWO have also been trying to bring media attention to the environmental damage caused to the valley due to the ongoing political unrest, seeking to expose the land mafia in regions as diverse as Phalgam, Chandanwari and Sonamarg and government intervention to stop the timber, land and construction mafias from exploiting the region's natural resources by taking undue advantage of the situation.