A 16-year-old Indian girl from UAE has won the prestigious international children’s peace prize 2016. She got the award for fighting towards climate justice and combating environmental degradation.
Kehkashan Basu got the prize, and it is presented by Bangladesh’s Nobel peace laureate Mohammad Yunus at a glittering ceremony in The Hague.
Mohammed Yunus got Nobel Prize in 2006 for his efforts for economic and social development. It underlined the urgency and importance of Kehkashan’s work, as more than three million children under the age of five die every year from environment-related diseases and many more suffer deeply from environmental issues.
“It is a great achievement for such a young person to have such reach and impact with her important message already,” Yunus said.
He also said “At present healthy environment is crucial for our society. Kehkashan Basu did an excellent job in educating students, she taken a great responsibility to work towards sustainable future.”
Kehkashan Basu said “I call upon every person to think of how they can contribute to the preservation of the environment. Time is not on our side? We have to act now, or we will have polar bears under palm trees.”
When Kehkashan was eight years old, she started educating neighbors on the importance of saving the environment. She planted her first tree and gathered children to collect the waste. She found the green hope organization at the age of twelve, and she conducted countless operations and awareness campaigns.
Kehkashan then became the youngest ever Global Coordinator for the Major Group for Children and Youth of the United Nations Environmental Program, and Green Hope has become an international organization with activities in more than ten countries and over a thousand young volunteers.
Mr. Marc Dullaert founder of kid’s right said kehkashan was chosen as a winner by expert committee because she has ability to mobilize thousands of children to save the environment. So we choose her as a winner and she said: “I will keep encouraging children and adults to create more sustainable growth.”