Nisha Sharma is a Fellow at Youth Leaders for Clear Air Fellowship by Clean Air Fund in the collaboration with Pravah.
Here, Nisha is sharing her story of being a part of this prestigious fellowship and designing and executing her unique Social Action Project to address Delhi’s acute air pollution problem.
Her efforts are actively bringing substantive changes in the lives of the residents of Delhi and empowering them to take meaningful action towards a cleaner, greener Delhi.
Go on and read how her story inspires you(th) to take action because the time is now!
How did you come to know about the fellowship? What inspired you to take it up?
I am a Pravah Alumna. Pravah sends us an email newsletter whenever any new opportunity comes. Clean air is the necessity of a living being. And especially if you live in a city like Delhi, so you got to know the importance of clean air ideally, but unfortunately, we don’t.
People don’t consider air pollution a big issue as Delhi’s crime rate. and for doing all of these things a person with a respiratory disorder suffer. And I am that victim. every year I suffer from air pollution and won’t be able to do normal activities as others do. I want to make a difference so Delhi can also have a good level of AQI.
What is the most pressing concern with respect to Air Pollution in Delhi?
Delhi is a land lock city and its weather depends on other states and it’s difficult to control that thing because it is not in our hands.
The ongoing construction here produces an immense amount of pollution. It will generate so much dust that will be mixed with air and in the form of acid rain, it pollutes air, water, and soil.
And the most important thing is the usage of single used plastic. People consume a huge amount of single used plastic and it’s difficult to compose it so unfortunately, it got burned which produces harmful gases.
What problems does your project solve? Briefly describe your efforts to address the issue.
People are not aware of the whole concept of air pollution and how many ways it occurs. And also, what are the policies the government implement to reduce Delhi’s pollution but we don’t see any difference. My main goal is to educate my targeted audience so they will be more aware of the issue and consider it a serious problem.
Also, bad lifestyle choices are a big problem and that generate a lot of waste so my project helps my audience to identify their lifestyle choices to see how much carbon footprint they produce and try to reduce as much as possible.
Which SDG(s) is your project directly addressing?
- SDG 3: Good health and Wellbeing
What motivates you to work towards the long term sustainability of the environment?
As we all know we have limited resources and we should sustain our environment for the future lb but humans have unlimited wants and to make them satisfied we need to consume a lot of things that produce tons of waste.
And we won’t be able to manage our waste so we dump it in seas or oceans or dig it into earth both of these things badly affect aquatic as well land’ species. and we need to stop.
What impact have you affected or plan to achieve?
While completing my fellowship, I want that my target audience should be more aware of the issue of air pollution and consider having clean air as a right and should know its basics.
They should take small initiatives like choosing sustainable products instead of plastic products. Also, we are trying to show our work to the administration and if they take it seriously we can improve people’s standard of living.
What challenges did you face during the journey? How did you overcome them?
The third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic was hitting us when we started our projects. And it was so difficult to work on the ground when government imposes weekend curfews.
Also, taking care of protocols was important for us. Due to the above-mentioned scenario, we were not able to do sessions but we didn’t lose hope we shifted our sessions and take it whenever we got a chance. My audience is adolescence and youth so it was way more difficult to conduct a session and convinced their parents.
What are the skills and values that you acquired during the fellowship?
I design and facilitate sessions for my target audience. I sought help from my co-fellows there to learn teamwork and leadership skills. Also, my communication and relation-building skills improved. I work in a non-profit organization so it’s important to have values like empathy. While doing all these things I use my social media platform to spread awareness.
How do you plan to sustain your project further?
I will write a blog similar to the one I am writing at Young Influx about what I did and how I did it at this fellowship and how much attention we need on the issue of air pollution along with my overall experience, difficulties faced during my on-ground work. I hope people will also take some initiative to make a change, even a small change.
My project is also arts-oriented. I think that it’s the simplest and most powerful way to convey your message through the arts. And after ending the fellowship, I can use them to make more people aware. Also, this issue has personally affected me. I always advocate for the same. We have an Instagram and FB Page for this. We can use it further to make people aware of the issue of air pollution.
We at Young Influx would like to take this opportunity to thank Nisha for taking a leap of faith and sharing her impeccable story with us. We appreciate her efforts and are pleased to bring out her story to a climate-conscious audience.
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