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Palak Sharma has more credentials for her work than her age itself. At present, she is dynamically handling Green Governance Initiative as the co-founder, working as the Managing Director at Arogya Rakshak Toilets (ART) Initiative, volunteering & researching with TheirWorld, a UK based charity (where she had been associated for the past 4 years), managing Centre for Policy Studies at JK Lakshmipath University, launching regular new episodes of her podcast "what's in the word", writing a textbook on Geography for the Indian Civil Services Exam & pitching investors, her startup, Recall Reuse, a zero waste sustainability initiative in the Indian beauty industry. Such versatility and prioritisation is a model for young people, that how dedication and hard work are the keys to accomplish not just professional but also personal goals that every young person aspires to achieve.
About Palak X Close
As Palak said to me once, when she was growing up in a relatively urban area, she often went with her father, who was working with the govt in irrigation department, to his sites in rural Rajasthan. There, she interacted with local population and saw first hand how deprivation from education, water distress and gender discrimination was affecting the population, more so the female gender. She often went with her father and taught little girls to spell, write in English. However, her own family is conservative in interacting with people from different caste, so she couldn’t continue this for very long. Given the opportunity to work in villages under National Service Schemes once she joined college in another city, Palak started reaching out to people she felt she could support in learning. She was especially keen on working with the women of these rural households because she had already seen their plight.
After joining the Office of the Hon'ble Member of Parliament from Jodhpur, Government of India in 2017, she realised the power that a parliamentarian had to affect the same people she was previously working with. Hence, she chose this opportunity to network around eminent offices of authority and developed small community development plans for implementation of existing policies that were generally executable with little pressure on the local government institutions. Through GGI, Palak has done the same. She has tried to ease the access to lawmakers by a common school/college going student. Young people like her, in the early phases of their lives, have 0 access to act upon their instinct to contribute to development, especially if they come from middle class families. GGI Young Leaders Program has targeted exactly that. By training the youth in the pressing matters of sustainable development and then connecting them to lawmakers who would readily work on these matters with them, is exactly the kind of opportunity that Palak wishes she had in her early years. She has convinced 10 Members of Parliament till date to allow GGI to associate with them for the Young leaders program.
In all these years, she has only become more determined to ease this connection, this bridge between young ignited minds and lawmakers of the country. Of course, her own personal challenges have impaired her progress time and again, but the power of youth that she now sees through the program, is her constant motivation.