Aarohi Bansal: recipient of a Women’s Day award at 15

15-year-old Aarohi Bansal is listed in the ‘Ones to Watch’ category in the NSW Local Women of the Year awards.

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Meet Aarohi Bansal, who has been named in the ‘Ones to Watch’ category as part of the NSW Local Women of The Year Awards 2024, ahead of International Women’s Day 2024.

The local humanitarian packed in 160 hours of volunteer work in 2023, then, a Year 10 student. This included organising food drives for homeless shelters and Foodbank, working with Special Olympics Australia and generating funds for the Kids’ Cancer Project.

Channelling her creativity, in 2019, she founded the organisation ‘War on Waste’ at her school by using short films made by her peers to emphasise the importance of recycling and donating all the proceeds to Drought Angels, a charity supporting Aussie farmers and rural communities through financial assistance, food hampers, care packs, and mental wellbeing support. 

And wait, that’s not all.

An avid tennis player, Aarohi used her skills to coach those at the Sydney Academy of Sport & Recreation at Narrabeen. She also participated in The Memory Project, a youth arts organisation that promotes intercultural understanding and kindness between children around the world, by painting portraits of kids facing hardship. (Aarohi’s own work was to paint portraits of orphaned Afghan children).

Aarohi Bansal
Aarohi with the Northern Beaches Special Olympic Team. Source: Supplied

Wanting to take her passion to another level, Aarohi wrote for the UN Youth NSW’s Global Advocate magazine in which she discussed her views on wellness for women. Titled ‘One Shot,’ the article encapsulates the issues of diet culture, body image and the impact of social media.

And of course, she juggles all of these activities with the pressures of school work. 

Um, what pressure? She’s on her school’s Student Representative Council (SRC), a House Captain, a member of the Northern Beaches Youth Advisory Council, and a shortlisted member of the Skills and Pathways Youth Advisory Council NSW.

“I just treat it all as a break from school work,” Aarohi explained, laughing.

Sport, art, writing, leadership – Aarohi certainly has an activity-rich life.

What drives Aarohi Bansal’s amazing passion for charity?

“I like to use my interests in various fields to find ways of giving back to the community,” the Manly Selective student told Indian Link. “It’s a means of raising awareness about the hardships people may be facing – whether it’s homelessness, poverty or illness.”

Women's Day
Source: Supplied

It’s also something she’s learned from her mum Sheetal.

“Mum teaches dance at the IABBV Hindi School in Thornleigh,” Aarohi revealed. “It’s a passion for her, and she’s using it to give back to the community. She feels really good about doing what she does. I suppose that has inspired me. Nothing is too small to contribute, and I’d like to encourage others of my generation to join me in becoming champions of welfare, in any way they can.”

She’s certainly living up to her name there, which means ‘on the way to success’ in her native Hindi language.

The bright, young woman already has an idea of what the future holds for her.

“When I was nine, I was awarded the William Langstone Epping Memorial Scholarship and my work experience at the Royal North Shore Hospital inspired me to think seriously about the Healthcare industry.”

The Ones To Watch category in the NSW Local Women of the Year awards aims to highlight young women between the ages of 7 to 15 who demonstrate acts of kindness and determination in improving the lives of those around them. Ten young women, including Aarohi Bansal, in the category this year were honoured by the NSW Minister for Women Jodie Harrison in a ceremony on Thursday 7th March at the ICC.

Aarohi with Mala Mehta, who won the NSW Local Woman of the Year for Wahroonga. Source: Supplied

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Khushee Gupta
Khushee Gupta
A passionate journalist dedicated to highlighting stories of diversity, empowerment and resilience in various industries and a Bollywood fanatic!

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