YD Fellowship: Know the People
Accountability Lab Nepal (ALN) is actively uniting diverse networks, employing both traditional and innovative methods to engage the youth. ALN’s primary focus is on providing them with essential knowledge, tools, and necessary mentorship. Despite the considerable number of young individuals in the country, we recognize that their full potential and capabilities have yet to be fully explored and utilized, especially in terms of involvement in decision-making processes. Despite the challenges they face, these young individuals hold the potential to propel democratic progress forward. To lend our support, Accountability Lab has introduced the Youth in Strengthening Democracy (YD) Fellowship, featuring 14 exceptional “YD Fellows” as champions of this cause. This initiative empowers the youth to become influential thought leaders through critical analysis, peer learning, networking, and advocacy facilitated by a media lab. In doing so, the Lab is nurturing a new generation capable of making meaningful contributions, providing constructive critiques, and reshaping the discourse surrounding democracy and human rights. We are enthusiastic about hosting and collaborating with these remarkable fellows.
Aanchal Adhikari, a passionate law student, is committed to promoting human rights, raising awareness, conducting research, and collaborating with organizations to drive positive change. She actively advocates as a peer educator, sharing knowledge to create a conducive learning environment for Comprehensive Sexuality Education. In addition to her dedication to human rights, Aanchal has a keen interest in diplomacy and international relations. She is an alumna of the U.S. Embassy Youth Council Nepal, and she holds a valued position as a peer educator at the Youth Activist Leadership Council (YALC) and YUWA. Currently, she serves as a youth advocate at the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and is a fellow at the Maryada Leadership Academy. Aanchal’s ultimate goal is to make a meaningful impact in the legal field and the arena of human rights, championing justice, equality, and democracy.
Aarya Ghimire, a dedicated lawyer and Human Rights Documentation Officer, is passionate about justice, equality, civil dialogue, and human rights. She has edited ‘The Nepal Human Rights Year Book’ and is currently working on a documentary about Kathmandu’s cultural heritage. Aarya volunteers as a mentor for economically disadvantaged students, empowering them in education and community support, showcasing her commitment to strengthening democracy. Through the fellowship, Aarya aims to connect with like-minded youth and explore non-traditional methods of promoting the values she firmly believes in, with democracy as the foundation of a just and equitable society, and citizens’ active participation being key to shaping its course.
Anukul is a young political activist and digital marketer with a background in IT. He is currently engaged in a digital movement called “Untold Period Stories,” which aims to eliminate the stigma surrounding menstruation and empower women and girls to share their experiences. Anukul utilizes his IT expertise and digital marketing skills to mobilize support and raise awareness about significant issues related to politics and social causes. He firmly believes that the active participation of young individuals in politics is crucial for strengthening democracy. Anukul is dedicated to creating a positive impact in both his community and beyond.
Babita Tamang is a dedicated child rights, women, and youth activist from Nepal. She serves as a program designer at the Centre to Assist and Protect Child Rights of Nepal (CAPCRON). Babita actively participates in public speaking events, such as Model UNs, debates, and oratories, and she is a law student with aspirations of becoming a litigator. She is also a member of the Dialogue Foundation, which promotes academic research and critical thinking among students, focusing on communal matters, human rights, and democracy. She firmly believes that democratic principles are essential in empowering individuals, amplifying their voices, and ensuring equal representation for all.
Elena Gurung is a Psychology student with a robust passion for learning, content creation, and making a positive impact on society. She holds a prominent presence in the media space and consistently produces content that attracts a growing following on social media. Elena harnesses the influential platform she has built to advocate for democracy. She firmly believes in using social media communication as a potent tool to connect with a wider audience and drive positive change. Elena excels in diverse team environments, fostering creativity and collaboration, with the ultimate goal of making a significant impact on human rights and democracy through her experiences and involvement in fellowship programs.
Jesish Ojha is pursuing his Bachelors in Agriculture. His passion for agricultural innovation and commitment to societal impact have propelled him to excel academically and contribute to various agricultural projects. He possesses a keen interest in agriculture and research, which led him to co-found the Student Organic Farm and engage in commercial vegetable farming. Currently, he serves as a Research Intern at the Molecular Plant Pathology Lab and is actively involved in the “Waste to Wonder” international project. With a strong academic background and a dedication to innovation, Jesish aims to become a lawmaker in the long run. His interest lies in promoting democracy and raising his voice on critical societal matters.
Krishna Ghimire is an enthusiastic and dedicated Child Rights and Youth Activist from Sunwal-4, Nawalparasi, Lumbini Province. Since his childhood, he has been actively involved with local clubs and committees. Currently, he serves as a Youth For Climate Action (YCA) Facilitator with the British Council. With extensive experience in Child-Friendly Local Governance and as a Program Host for “Nawalparasi Idol,” he actively advocates for child rights and youth empowerment. His impact extends beyond his community, making him a driving force for change. Krishna Ghimire has a deep interest in democracy and actively seeks opportunities to contribute through his skills.
Mohammad Salim Kabir
Mohammad Salem Kabir identifies himself as a homosexual man and has fearlessly entered into a same-sex marriage. He has been actively engaged in advocating for marriage equality and continues to advocate for the rights of the LGBTIQ community. Currently serving as the President of the “Out & About” youth team in Province-1 and working as a Monitoring & Evaluation Associate & Front Desk Officer at Our Equal Access, Kabir aims to promote inclusive societies where every individual’s voice, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity, is heard and valued. His ultimate goal is to advance human rights and equality, fostering a world where diversity is celebrated, and discrimination and prejudice have no place.
Naresh Sharma Awasthi
Naresh Sharma Awasthi is a Social Youth Activist from Sudurpaschim Province, Nepal, with seven years of experience in various sectors such as youth leadership, good governance, democracy, CSE (Comprehensive Sexuality Education), climate change, and SDGs (Sustainable Development Goals). He has traveled to over 30 districts, including rural areas, providing training and leadership programs to more than 15,000 individuals, including youth, children, and marginalized communities. Additionally, he collaborates with numerous NGOs, INGOs (International Non-Governmental Organizations), and international youth groups in various roles and responsibilities. He firmly believes in the power of democratic principles to create positive societal change.
Rakshya Bam is a dedicated social worker currently pursuing her Master’s in Gender Studies. In her role as the Executive Coordinator at the Ujwal Thapa Foundation, she leads nationwide campaigns on the Right to Information and empowers youth through training. Rakshya actively engages with civil society, participating in various national-level social movements. During the COVID-19 pandemic, she showcased her leadership abilities by spearheading response activities. In addition to her advocacy work, Rakshya channels her passion for social issues through writing and poetry, using creative expression as a powerful tool for change.
Roshni Karna, a young and vibrant changemaker from Kathmandu, Nepal, is dedicated to empowering youth through education and leadership. She excels in her studies and actively participates in impactful initiatives like SDG MUN and IYC, demonstrating her passion for social change by collaborating with global youth to address important issues. Roshni’s leadership shines through her involvement in transformative events and her promotion of sportsmanship. Committed to personal growth, she engages in workshops and advocates for youth engagement in democracy. With exceptional communication and critical thinking skills, Roshni continues to drive positive change in her community, inspiring the next generation for a better and more inclusive world.
Shristi Siwakoti is a final-year undergraduate student at the Agriculture and Forestry University, passionate about sustainable farming and climate-resilient agriculture. She and her fellow students manage a commercial-scale vegetable farm, promoting sustainable practices. Shristi actively seeks to engage in discussions on agricultural policies, providing informed feedback to shape regulations that align with sustainability and advance the field. In addition to her dedication to sustainable farming, Shristi Siwakoti is keenly interested in contributing to the shaping of agricultural policies, with the goal of ensuring that the voices of farmers and stakeholders are heard in policy discussions.
Swekshya Karki is a passionate law student with a focus on making a positive impact on society through her commitment to gender equality, climate action, and quality education in alignment with the SDGs. She has been actively engaged in social service for over three years, including her participation in the Youth Ambassador Program, where she collaborated on innovative solutions for global challenges. With her strong leadership skills, Swekshya aims to mobilize youth for the creation of an inclusive and sustainable world, driving policy changes that promote social justice and empower marginalized communities. She firmly believes that by working together, we can bring about positive societal change and build a future where democratic values flourish, inspiring progress for future generations.
Sujita Dhakal is a dedicated and passionate forestry professional with a Master of Science in Forestry from Tribhuvan University. She serves as a driving force in promoting the interlinkages of Gender Equality, Disability, and Social Inclusion (GEDSI) within the field of forestry in Nepal. Ms. Dhakal actively collaborates with the Female Foresters Network, Nepal, advocating for an inclusive and equitable workspace. Through community engagement and policy advocacy, she empowers women and underrepresented groups to participate in forest management and decision-making processes.