Kehkashan Basu (born in 2000) was elected, at the age of 12, for a 2 year term as UNEP’s (United Nations Environment Programme) Global Coordinator for Children & Youth and a member of its Major Groups Facilitating Committee and she is the youngest person and the first minor, ever, to be elected into this position in the history of UNEP. She is the winner of the 2016 International Children’s Peace Prize. She is a United Nations Human Rights Champion, a National Geographic Young Explorer, one of Canada’s Top25 Women of Influence and has been named as one of the Top100 SDG Leaders in the world in 2020.
Her internationally acclaimed work on sustainability has resulted in her appointment as a Climate Reality Mentor, a One Young World Ambassador, Honorary Advisor for the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development – New York, Global Teen Leader at We Are Family Foundation, members of World Oceans Day Global Youth Advisory Council and EarthEcho International Youth Leadership Council. She is also the youngest member of Canada’s Women in Renewable Energy forum and the Council Lead at Toronto-St.Paul’s Constituency Youth Council.
Kehkashan is the founder of global social innovation enterprise, GREEN HOPE FOUNDATION
, whose mission is to engage all sections of civil society, especially those who are marginalized, using ESD (Education for Sustainable Development) as a transformative tool to provide them with knowledge, behaviors and skills to think and act for a sustainable future. It now has over 2000 members and chapters in 16 countries. Kehkashan is the author of “The Tree of Hope” which was launched at the United Nations in New York, during the 2015 UN Children’s Summit. The book tells the story of young people taking actions to mitigate climate change. Her blogs have been published by the Huffington Post, UNICEF and many other portals.
She complements her grassroots advocacy with influencing policy making at the highest levels of governance, by amplifying youth voices through her speeches and interventions. A powerful and much sought after speaker, she has spoken at over 200 United Nations and other international summits, traveling to over 40 countries.
In recognition of her work on nuclear disarmament, she was awarded the first ever Voices Youth Award in commemoration of the legacy of Mikhail Gorbachev & George Shultz. She is a L’Oréal Paris Women of Worth Honoree, Starfish Canada’s Top25 Environmentalists Under 25, the recipient of the 2020 Women Super Achiever Award, the John Muir Conservation Award for Habitat Restoration, the Straubel Leadership Award, Community Award for Youth Service in Ontario, the 2019 Innovator of the Year ( Awarded at HundrEd Innovation Summit in Helsinki on 8th Nov 2018 chosen from the world’s top 100 innovations in Education) . Kehkashan has also received international awards from UNCCD (United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification ) in 2012 , the 2012 Korea Green Foundation award, the 2013 International Young Eco-Hero award from Action for Nature, USA & the 2014 Kids are Heroes, USA award, 2014 GESS award as Ambassador for the Environment and the 2014 Solar Pioneer Award , the 2015 Non-Resident Indian of the Year Award, the 2015 & 2018 International Diana Award , the 2017 Turner Social Change Prize, the 2017 National Energy Globe Award , the 2018 Rising Star Award in Toronto on the occasion of International Women’s Day and she was one of the five Caribbean & the Americas Region Winners for the Commonwealth Youth Awards for Excellence in Development Work 2018. She has been named as one of Toronto’s most inspiring women changemakers.
Kehkashan joined the World Future Council as a Youth Ambassador in 2012, when she was just 12 years old. She is now the youngest Councillor at the World Future Council.
Follow her on social media: Facebook
Kehkashan talked about three different songs during the podcast. This is the link
to the first song, the second song will be available soon on her website and the third song can be found via our Spotify Playlist #WalkTalkListen
consisting of songs chosen by our podcast guests.
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