Smriti’s journey from local to international levels through networking and getting involved in youth club

20 years old Smriti Parajuli is a resident of Mandandeupur-11, Kavrepalanchok. She joined Jagaran youth Club as a member two years ago and is associated with the club as a secretary. Smriti calls herself an active person who loved networking and working for the community since childhood. With her immense desire to be engaged in personal development, leadership, and social networking as well as community-level programs, Parajuli joined the club. Her involvement with the youth club has helped her a lot to work on her public speaking skills. Parajuli happily shares that the minute keeping and documentation skills she learnt as a secretary of the youth club are some of her most valuable skills. She has not observed positives changes on her skills only, but also on her attitude towards society. A 2nd year Bachelors in Business Management (BBM) student and secretary of the club, Smriti Parajuli says,

“You can see most of the youths migrating over cities and other countries for their career. There are very less youths who are working for their society and community. I wish I could inspire them how much potential they can put into the community levels and what they can get in return.” With inspiration from her father and her seniors, Smriti is currently proud to become one of the young representatives that participate in national and international platforms. Adding on to her experiences she says,“I have come to realize that social exposure is necessary. I think a degree alone cannot help you grow. You need to acquire leadership and other interpersonal skills that will help you boost your confidence so as to empower you.

I can deal with any strangers now. I feel responsible and accountable for my works. I can also make my elders accountable for their work. I would not see myself here if I had not decided to join the club.”Smriti participated and coordinated to participate in events like: waste management survey, knowledge sharing program regarding waste management for the villagers, plantation program, water resource cleaning, etc. in order to work for the environment. Similarly, she has conducted and participated other activities from her club such as: session for students regarding good touch-bad touch and child rights. She and her club members also actively worked to raise awareness during the pandemic of covid-19. Parajuli and her clubmates also raised a fund to distribute masks and sanitizers to the community with a coordination with other social volunteers. Parajuli is one of the people who also loves to observe the changes she brought to the community after she has implemented some activities. She says, “After we made villagers aware about the waste management, we went to every doorstep to observe the changes. This provided me a sense of satisfaction to know that I am able to contribute for a change.” Smriti’s one of the proudest moment was to represent “Youth Empowerment Program (YEP)” project area in SAARC Regional Meeting. She also felt honored to participate in ‘National Youth Conference’. Parajuli says she owes these opportunities to being active socially and joining club as a part of YEP. When asked whether she was empowered for her career, future and society, she replied, “Of course, I am empowered for myself, my community and my nation. I started from the local level and gradually I am representing my district, province, and even nation. Not all youths in Nepal get these opportunities. Thanks to ARD and TDH for making me confident, socially responsible, developing my life skills and let me explore my community”. Youths like Smirti Parajuli are valuable assets of the country. Empowering them and encouraging them is one of our responsibilities. Smriti is just a representative of YEP, there are other many faces that we have been working with and we are proud to see optimistic changes in them.