Sankalp Mohan Sharma: Aspiring environmental lawyer leading change with words and action

Sankalp Mohan Sharma: Aspiring environmental lawyer leading change with words and action

Sankalp Mohan Sharma, 16, India

I am Sankalp Mohan Sharma from India. I am 16 years old and currently in the 12th grade at the Frank Anthony Public School in Bangalore, Karnataka.

With a unique love for the environment and inclination toward law, I am an aspiring environmental lawyer.

Coming from a family of hard workers, I have always been motivated to do more and more for my society. My father serving two decades in the Indian Army has not only ushered discipline in my personality but also given me immense exposure to the most extreme challenges an army family faces, the toughest of them all being living separated from him while he was on the borders protecting the country. This also made me independent and taught me so much, the fruits of which I bear today.

As for my mother, she has been one of the biggest inspirations of my life. She went from being a homemaker to a life skills trainer, counselor and holder of the Mrs. India Asia International World 2016 title. Soft skills and resilience are things I have learned from her.

Thus, with a perfect combination of the chivalry of an army officer and the finishing skills of a Mrs. India winner, I yet had a cherry to top it all off, my older sister, who is one of the top models of India, a Miss India finalist and a microbiologist currently working on a cure for cancer with her own cancer NGO, Silver Linings. Whenever I am asked what is the driving force that keeps you motivated to work for the environment, I have only one answer and that is my sister.

I am presently India's youngest Climate Reality Leader and the youngest state head of the Walk for Water global campaign. I give presentations and speeches across India on climate change and water conservation, being a passionate public speaker. I present to all kinds of audiences, from schools and colleges to corporate organizations and the Indian Army.

I have also led the Walk for Water campaign in my state of Karnataka, which was a huge success and was globally appreciated.

Human rights are also one field I have been working on consistently. I am the international coordinator of the Human Rights Sanrakshan Sansthaa organization. I'm also a staunch supporter of gender equality, the opposite of which is one of the biggest problems faced in my country, after pollution and shortage of clean drinking water.

As for the Youth Assembly at the U.N., I am looking forward to meeting several leaders chosen to represent their countries and cultures and exchange ideas with them so as to form future collaborations and bring about change not only in our countries but also globally by forming global youth movements to achieve the various SDG's of the 2030 U.N. agenda, not to mention the uncountable things I will get to learn for implementation in my community and country eventually.

The assembly is a great platform for us to learn, share ideas and implement them. I look forward to making the most of it.

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