Kehkashan Basu, Grade 12 student of Deira International School in Dubai Image Credit: Supplied

First, tell us a bit about yourself?

I am 16 and a Grade 12 student of Deira International School in Dubai. I launched a youth organisation called Green Hope in 2012 to work towards a sustainable future through direct engagement and upliftment of marginalised sections of civil society.


What is ‘Gift of Education’?

This is a Green Hope project through which we reached out to children of prisoners in Nepal’s jails. We returned from Kathmandu last Wednesday after distributing 120kg of stationary to 200 such children. We had collected these items over two months with our pocket money and funds raised by our friends. We promoted the concept of renewable energy among the residents, distributing LED bulbs among villagers on the outskirts of Kathmandu. We also visited an old age home and an establishment for HIV-infected orphans.


What was the interaction like?

It was a very moving experience. We used music, art and dance to engage and entertain the children, while also explaining the basics of conservation and how each one of them could be a change-maker.


You are an “eco-warrior” with several titles to your credit. What do they translate into?

Yes, I am the youth ambassador for the World Future Council, honorary adviser for the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development – NY, a former global coordinator for children and youth, UNEP MGFC and ambassador, IDEAS For Us. I use these titles to spread awareness among young people and tell them that age is no barrier to start working for the environment and the community.