Leaping into the Void: How It’s the Best Decision You’ll Ever Make – Sharad Poornima’s Story

We all have doubts about what we can achieve and whether we alone can make a difference in this world. For many of us these doubts debilitate us from taking that first giant step toward action. But one day I took that step, and it changed my life completely.

I have always had an interest in the environment. I used to read the newspapers every morning and watch the news on TV every night. I thought I understood what was causing Delhi’s pollution and believed it would eventually get fixed, but I never understood the full extent of the issue. Following the news I witnessed the situation go from bad to worse. It was then I decided to do something about it.

While I never really believed that I alone could make a difference, I couldn’t sit back and watch us destroy our environment. When I thought about the legacy I wanted to leave for my children, and my children’s children I knew I had to try to do my bit to make the world they will grow up in just that little bit better. So when members from Haiyya’s Youth4Environment Fellowship approached me, I jumped on-board and decided I was going to do whatever I could to help save Delhi’s environment.

Deciding to take action was both one of the hardest and easiest decisions of my life. In our rapidly globalised world people are completely engrossed in their own lives and are unwilling to look beyond their homes and their own interests at the world and society surrounding them. It is easy to forget the environment is everyone’s responsibility. It is what provides for us, it is where we live, and yet we don’t seem to care that we’re destroying it. People’s initial resistance was incredibly disheartening. But eventually with persistence I found that people listened and followed and were able to achieve the unimaginable.

I have been overwhelmed at the support I have received from the youth in my community, who have gone above and beyond what I could have ever expected. I am immensely proud that I have been able to inspire young adults within my community with my own small actions and my own passion.

Joining the fellowship has not only taught me so much about how I can help the environment through simple everyday actions, but also about myself and my own potential. If you had told me that I alone could make a difference and lead an action across my community I would never have believed you. But I now know I can engage others and help them make an impact in their own lives, which has given me confidence in myself. I am proud of my own accomplishments, but I am prouder of what those around me have achieved. I believe that if we all decide to act we can leave this world better than we found it.

Taking action is always a sacrifice. But it is a sacrifice worth making as you will discover things about yourself and your own potential, abilities and passions that you otherwise would never realise you possessed. Through my journey I have realised I am not just a drop in an ocean and that I alone can make a change.  



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