What do I do?
Since 2012, I have been teaching Tae Kwon Do and self defense techniques to children and teenagers in various shelters and village around the outskirts of Bangalore, India.
I am in 12th grade in a high school in Phoenix, USA. I was born in Chicago, US, lived in the US most of my life. I have also lived in Shanghai, China for 3 years. My parents were born in India and we visit family in India every year.
I am a third degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. I earned my first degree black belt when I was 8. I have also earned an intermediate level in Wing Chung in China. Wing Chung is a traditional Chinese martial art. I have a younger brother Sanjit, who is 8 years old and is also a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
I kept reading about violence and abuse against children in India and it appeared that it was becoming a common occurrence in the news. I always felt frustrated and helpless and wished it would stop. And then in December 2013, I read about the girl in New Delhi, India who was physically abused in a moving bus and died after being thrown out of the bus. It shook the world and rattled me to the core. I decided that I’ve got to do something about it; anything would be better than nothing. On every trip to India, I often felt very bored and wanted to do something interesting and worthwhile with my time. This was the perfect outlet for me.
Here’s what I've been doing each summer for the last 4 years:
How can you help?
I feel good that I am contributing and making a difference in the lives of the children, however it is too slow. This started out as one person trying to make a difference. I am now working to get others to join me in making a difference. I am confident that there are others who are interested and want to do this.
I have started an initiative called “Share Your Skills” which is a platform where anyone can contribute to the betterment of underprivileged children in India. The idea is – others like me visiting India who may be getting bored and want to contribute, could offer their skills or talents for the benefit of poor children.
I recently met with Amitha Pai from “One Good Step” and see this as a great initiative that complements what I am trying to achieve. They are working to connect individuals like me with opportunities to help others in India. I am hopeful that you will join me in this initiative in trying to make the world a better place. Click on the links below to learn more and see how you can help.