Ms. Neha Gurung is a 19-year-old Social Activist from Kathmandu. Since 2017, She has been actively working in the Child Sector. Currently, She is serving as a Secretary at Rotaract Club of Reliance College, Through the club, she has been conducting various fellowship programs, skill development, and competitions for children.
Apart from that; She is also an advisor at Kathmandu District Child Club Network. She has also worked as a program presenter of Radio Program #Coolkids.com, an awareness program against online child sexual abuse which was produced by Voice of Children and boardcasted from 10 different radio stations around the country. Ms. Gurung is also working as a Girl Co-Leader to prepare “Girl’s led Report on CEDAW”. Similarly, She is also an active member of Global Young Influencer Group of PLAN INTERNATIONAL and member of Youth Volunteers in Humanitarian of Nepal Mahila Ekta Samaj. Apart from that, she has an interest in Fashion.
She is one of the Finalists of Wai Wai Glocal Teen Hero Nepal 2021. We had a few conversations with her regarding his projects. The major highlights of the interview are given below;
How was your experience when you were announced as the Top 6 Finalist of GTH Nepal 2021?
I was so happy to know that I was selected as Top 6 finalists of GTH 2021. It was a wonderful experience to get the love and support from so many individuals. So many people congratulated and voted for me. Moreover, being on the top six, provides me a wonderful opportunity to interact and share my work\activism among such an influencing persons and getting to learn from them was such a wonderful thing to cherish.
How did your journey as a Social Activist start? What kind of challenges did you face on your way?
I got to know about child clubs and was amazed watching other children like me speaking so confidently and talking aboutdifferent social issues and that attract me to join the child club and after being involved, I got to know about different issues and how I can learn, create impact and empower other children, young girls and youth through such platform and I really enjoyed exploring more opportunities on my way and feel very happy whenever I was able to help other and share my knowledge among them.
And in the beginning phase, I wasn’t supported by my family and wasn’t allowed to go for programs, but I managed to convince my family and then attended the program and I was really an introvert and I was bullied on my schools days for my loud voice due to which I didn’t much speak and shared anything but gradually, I find myself a different person on studio with a microphone and that has helped me build my confidence and I am still on the process of making myself and establishing myself.
When did you realize you should work for children?
While on the child club, we formed child club, got to interact with other children from around the country and also we used to learn about different issues like child labor, child marriage, child trafficking, abuse etc and I was already on the platform through which I could contribute to address such issues atleast by awaring children, being voice of children and sharing the issues with concerned authorities. So, when I was about 16 years old I realized I should work for other children and young girls.
Who was the inspiration behind in making Neha the way she is today?
I think , Neha (myself) who was always passionate about exploring new things and shaping herself in any ways and determined for the change was my biggest inspiration. I started with the intention to enhance my skills, get some knowledge, networking, grab more opportunities and now I am atleast on a track where I have people who support me, guide me, listen to me and ask me . Besides, that I believe there is something to learn from everyone. And I tried to learn something from the people I met and everyday I try to explore new things and share my knowledge and try to create an impact.
What are your future plans that you are planning to execute in upcoming days?
So, In the near future, I am planning to start work on my municipality to make it a child-friendly municipality as I have already started working on some wards for child-friendly school concept and that would be the starting phase to work on our child-friendly concept and ensure child rights on every level at least starting from one municipal. I would be working for youth empowerment and community service through my child and Rotaract clubs. Besides that, I have been running a boutique along with my phupu and we have been slowly expanding it so we hope to run a grand boutique in the near future and also I am planning to do a Diploma in Fashion Designing.
What message would you like to deliver to teenagers?
I wanted to say that there would be such difficult times in your life when there won’t be anyone for your support, but when you see deep inside there would be always the inner you who would be always there no matter what so make yourself strong, establish yourself and do whatever your heart feel right unless it doesn’t harm someone.
There would be a lot of people to criticise you and on such time you might feel low and doubt yourself so, I wanted to say love yourself and never ever doubt yourself and be confident cause if you, yourself doesn’t trust you, doesn’t love you then no one else will do so. And most importantly, there is always someone who is more privilege than us and who is under privilege than us and deprived from basic things so, have the heart to help the under privilege one and share love and compassion and have the mind to think critically and get more opportunities and create more opportunities.
Glocal Teen Hero is a platform for teenagers to identify and honor outstanding teenagers whose creativity, commitment, experience, and strong leadership have helped them achieve success in an increasingly challenging environment. This award recognizes and honors the exceptional teen whose work is sustainable and who can think out of the box addressing the issues and creating an impact in society. Fostering a collaborative community among recipients and strengthening the national recognition of today’s young leaders is a primary goal of the Glocal Teen Hero Award.