On Thursday 12th October at a ceremony in Westminster, eight-year-old, Aleesha Gadhia from West Bridgford received the prestigious British Citizen Youth Award in recognition of her extraordinary endeavours.
Aleesha is a climate activist and a mini-ambassador for ‘Cool Earth’, a UK-based international NGO that funds Indigenous communities to protect endangered rainforests in order to combat the climate crisis. Aleesha has raised more than £3,000 for the charity by scootering 80km across Nottingham. Since the age of six, she has been dedicated to climate change, including planting trees with her local MP around the community, and taking part in local litter picks with the Mayor or Rushcliffe, to clean up the area and inspire fellow residents to care about their environment.
Aleesha has a social media presence on her page, ‘Princess Climate Change’, actively encouraging other children to get involved with caring for, and maintaining, their local areas, protecting wildlife, and reducing their carbon footprint.
As a climate activist, Aleesha wrote to hundreds of organisations about climate change urging them to take action and explaining that they are in a position to help. Aleesha received praise for her dedication to the cause from a Prime Minister, Sir David Attenborough and the late Queen Elizabeth II. Using not only her voice but actions to make a difference, Aleesha is determined to continue to be part of the solution to climate change.
Aleesha was presented with the BCyA Medal of Honour by the Secretary of State for Education, The Rt Hon Gillian Keegan.
Hosting the event was Singer and Actress, Kimberly Wyatt who is also a Patron of The British Citizen Youth Award who said: “Many of these kids have faced turmoil in their own lives yet still choose to be selfless and help others. I applaud you and your families for your hard work and dedication. You are the future, and your brilliant endeavours will make a difference.”
Dame Mary Perkins, founder of Specsavers and Patron of the BCA said: “The British Citizen Youth Award recipients are very special individuals. These young people all go above and beyond for others with selfless acts of kindness and community spirit with no thought or expectation of praise or reward. This Medal ceremony is a great opportunity to shine a light on what they do and give them the recognition they so thoroughly deserve. They are the nation’s true unsung heroes and the rising stars of the future.”
Nominations are now being accepted for the 2024 medal presentations, register online at