Arushi uses award in honour of late princess to get out green message.
SHARJAH // Arushi Madan is a teenager on a mission to educate her friends, family and the world about the importance of protecting and respecting the natural environment.
The 16-year-old Delhi Private School student has scooped a host of top honours for her devotion to green issues, including the prestigious Sheikh Hamdan Award for distinguished student in 2013, Outstanding Environment Student award in 2014, the Green Star UAE title and award also in 2014, and the best Environment Ambassador award by Tunza Eco-generation and many other awards and accolades.
In February last year, she was invited to Seoul, South Korea, as the UAE’s representative for the Global Youth Eco Leadership Summit.
She can now add the International Diana Award, presented in memory of the late UK royal Princess Diana, for her contribution to environmental protection.
“I read a lot about the increasing threat due to climate change and global warming,” said Arushi, who has taken an interest in ecological issues since she was a fifth grade student.
She was motivated to take action after watching news coverage of natural disasters caused by climate change.
“Too many are not aware of their carbon footprint and ways to reduce the pollution, so I took it upon myself to start doing things that can help the environment. Also, I wanted to set an example to others so that they share our global problem and help in protecting it.”
The Indian student’s new year’s resolution was to collect waste paper from her home and neighbourhood for recycling at Bee’ah, the Sharjah-based waste management company.
“I’m a big supporter of Bee’ah and I am a team leader in Students for the Earth group that compromises of students and friends from different schools in Sharjah,” said Arushi, who recently took to using public transport to get to school to cut down on her carbon footprint.
“I told my parents that I want to educate labourers in Sharjah because they generally don’t have access to television and are not well informed.”
Arushi and her parents visited Sharjah free zone and gave a lecture to 40 workers about the impact of global warming and how little things in their daily lives can help the environment.
“I like teaching people on ways on protecting the environment, and I try to lead by example,” Arushi said.
“I hope more people who see me working and helping the environment would join me and follow me in my quest.”
Receiving the Diana Award has inspired Arushi to continue with her eco-conscious work.
“Winning the award motivates me to do more. It motivates me to work harder, the award tells me that I am a good person and I am doing something good to the society I live in.
“It also means I am contributing to the world as a whole. As a teen, I like to hang out with my friends, and I like dancing, writing poems and researching online,” she said.
“I think of myself as a religious and humble girl, my friends say I am a down to earth. I don’t lose my temper and I respect other’s opinions.” she said.