Fourteen-year-old Khushi Ashwin, who lives in Bradley Stoke, is one of 25 young adults from around the world who have been selected to speak at a special conference on global sustainable development being held at the United Nations in New York in February 2019.
Khushi, who attends Abbeywood Community School in Stoke Gifford, has been working towards her dream for many months now and through her hard work and determination, that dream is finally becoming a reality.
Khushi is a black belt 2nd dan in shotokan karate and she is campaigning for gender equality. At fourteen, she already has a mission to reduce violence against women. She says:
“I dream of a world where there is no discrimination based on what gender you are. I want equal rights to be given to all girls and boys.”
She has chosen karate as a means to help her get closer to achieving her dream of women’s empowerment. Describing what karate means to her, she says: “I personally have had many benefits from learning the martial art form of karate. It is an amazing sport which is not only fun to do, but also trains our physical bodies to be flexible, keeps us mentally fit and teaches us self-discipline and endurance, and above all it teaches us self-defence techniques.”
Khushi has attended a Future Leaders’ course organised by 1 Million for 1 Billion (1M1B), a skills development and entrepreneurship programme based on the 17 UN sustainable development goals.
The programme aims to train one million young people to create jobs for one billion people.
Khushi started the course in June 2018 while she was living in India. Whilst there, she taught basic self-defence karate techniques to thirteen young girls who lived in a shelter home. She feels that it gave her a sense of satisfaction for having touched the lives of those thirteen girls in a positive way. Now that Khushi is back living in Bristol, she has finished all seven stages of the course and is ready for its culmination in February 2019 when she travels to New York to attend the 1M1B conference at the United Nations (UN).
Whilst at the conference she will make a presentation in the Halls of the UN about her goal to empower women to defend themselves, realise their potential and change their lives, and create a better tomorrow – thereby aiming to acquire worldwide support for this noble cause.
Khushi is hoping that attending the UN will be the first step towards her ambition of reducing violence against women. She said:
“Like Abraham Lincoln once said, the best way to predict the future is to create it. I feel this trip is going to bring me closer to creating mine.”
• Visit the 1M1B website at onemoneb.com
Photos: 1 Khushi at her Bradley Stoke home, holding a poster showing the 17 UN sustainable development goals on which the 1M1B programme is based. 2 Khushi teaching self-defence karate to a group of young girls at a shelter home in India.
This article originally appeared in the January 2019 issue of the Bradley Stoke Journal magazine (on page 16). The magazine is delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH (except August), to ALL 8,700 homes in Bradley Stoke. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.
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