Aleesha Gadhia, a six-year-old Indian-origin girl who campaigns to raise awareness of deforestation and climate change issues was on Thursday named a winner of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's daily Points of Light award.
Gadhia is a climate activist and mini ambassador for UK-based non-profit Cool Earth and has so far raised over GBP 3,000 for the organisation, which works alongside rainforest communities to halt deforestation and lobbies business to create more sustainable practices.
She hails from West Bridgford in Nottinghamshire, central England, and has also set up a climate change club at her school, encouraging others to look after the environment and include activities such as litter picking and planting trees.
“I feel really excited and happy to have won the award. I am really grateful and honoured to have Prime Minister Boris Johnson to award and write a letter to me. I never thought I would receive such an award,” Gadhia said.
“Climate change is a really important issue and I hope raising awareness will tackle this problem. Thank you to everyone who has supported me, and thanked her teachers and also Cool Earth for making her their first youth ambassador.
The child climate activist’s parents Kiran and Pooja said they are “so proud” of their daughter for what she has done over the previous year for “someone so young.”
Ruth Edwards, Conservative MP for Rushcliffe, said that she is “absolutely delighted” to hear that Gadhia has been “recognised” for her “amazing work” to safeguard rainforests and raise climate change awareness.
“I think she is setting a great example of what we can all do to help our environment. This award is truly well-deserved, and I can’t wait to see what’s next for Aleesha and her campaign,” Edwards was quoted as saying in a release.
Aleesha was also recognised for sending out hundreds of letters and emails to top firms in Great Britain and other influential people in the business, encouraging them to take climate action as well.
This is not the first time that Gadhia has been in the spotlight. Earlier this year, the six-year-old took up a challenge and rode 80km on her scooter to raise money for ‘Cool Earth’ for which she received the backing of Queen Elizabeth II and environmentalist Sir David Attenborough.
“All the money raised will go towards making this a greener planet,” she had said following the scooter challenge.
Gadhia has become the 1,755th person to receive the Prime Minister’s Points of Light award after it was launched in 2014 to honour people making a difference in their communities.
Aleesha's parents Kiran and Pooja Gadhia said they were very proud of her. "She has done so much over the past year for someone so young," they said. They added that she had become an inspiration for everyone and wished Gadhia to continue her great work.
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