Published: 05th July 2018
Help this 19-year-old to address some of the most important environmental issues at a Harvard-initiated global conference this August
Anuksha Arsh Gulati is an environmentally woke teenager who has been selected for the Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations, 2018 - and she needs your help to be able to attend it!
Convinced that millenials may actually be the ‘special snowflake’ generation? Here is 19-year-old Anuksha Arsh Gulati to prove it to you, why the youngsters of today are probably stepping up a lot more than not.
The Delhi-based teenager is not only an English announcer at the All India Radio’s youth channel, but has now also been selected for the esteemed Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR) for their five day conference on some of the most important social, cultural, political, environmental & economical issues across the world. Selected to discuss and debate on the issues of the environment and sustainability with special focus around India, Anuksha had been shortlisted for the conference last year as well, but couldn’t make it due to financial constraints.
But this year, nothing will hold her back! “I am crowdfunding my trip to the conference, not only to be able to be a part of the discussions but also in an attempt to make people aware about the cause,” Anuksha says. The HPAIR conference will be held between August 16 to August 20 at Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
A student of Biotechnology at the Delhi Technological University, Anuksha concedes that it has indeed taken her some time to take onus for the poor environmental situation. “We talk about sustainability as a luxurious concern, a principle meant to be followed by the top notch industries working on environment concerns. Reading articles or rushing through the statistics or even looking at images, doesn't trigger the required action. Watching the living conditions of people in reality, that surely does. I do not have to quote any distant land for presenting the gravity of the case here; residents of metropolitan cities, especially Delhi, know the agony of not being able to obtain pure air to breathe,” she says. Last year, Delhi came to be recognized as one the most polluted cities in the world, with the air quality index deteriorating to 1010, way off the hazardous limits.
So how did her change begin? “Change begins from the individual. Soon after I realised that the difference had to begin with me, I made it a point to not throw my garbage around, and more so, not let anyone around me do it either. I do think it is the awareness and the inculcation of these values, which makes the larger impact. Personally, I don’t believe that organisations or companies alone can do this work, and requires it to pour from the heart of every individual,” the passionate teenager tells me.
The HPAIR conference is an initiative of Harvard University, with 54 conferences in 12 different host countries, touching the lives of more than 32,000 students and young professionals. While Anuksha doesn’t think that attending conferences in itself will provide the solutions for the current environmental situation, she definitely does think that this could be the potential first step. “Recognition is always the first step, and hence recognising and promoting platforms which genuinely cater to pressing issues like these, is the first step to a transformation. Unless, we identify and accept the presence of environmental complexities rationally, there is hardly any scope of coming out of it,” she adds.
Through her journey, Anuksha has become woke and vocal about the pressing issue of the deteriorating environment. Which is why she is hell-bent on crowdfunding her way to the conference. “We're aware of the toxic consequences that follow. But, do we do anything? That's the answer I want to change. With as less as Rs 200, people can be a part of the change, and help me make a difference, and be a part of the difference as well,” Anuksha says. She believes that that the crowdfunding will not only help her get to the conference, but will, in its own way, make more people participate in her journey to address the situation of sustainability in India and across the world.
“Every drop, every action counts,” the young and bright Anuksha believes. And this her biggest plea to her fellow millennials and even to the adults - take that extra step, and try to avoid the ‘extra’ consumption we believe in . “We're all in harsh waters and we can only sail through if we tackle it efficiently and together,” she says. She optimistic, that the change will come - “After all, has there been anything that the human kind has targeted for and not achieved?”
Help Anuksha Arsh Gulati attend the HPAIR conference this year, if you would like a young and driven mind to address the environmental concerns of our country on a global platform! Find her crowdfunding page on https://milaap.org/fundraisers/help-me-attend-hpair. The portal will be accepting funds for Anuksha until August 15, 2018.