24Degree and Institution:
Bachelors of Arts (Honours) in Economics; University of Delhi
In a childhood spent on the swings and streets of Ghaziabad, Aanchal recounts herself as one of the lucky ones to grow up in the age when toys and storybooks were one’s endeared possessions. Her father works as a middleman in iron and steel industry, an occupation weakened by technology but constructed by reputation and her mother is a brilliant chef who only practices at home. The stories of her parents’economic struggles instilled in her the values of respecting people and experiences, good or bad.
After studying science with economics in school, Aanchal chose to pursue the latter from the University of Delhi. While in college, she practiced French, volunteered with the Becoming I Foundation and became a campus coordinator with the Centre for Civil Society (CCS). Before she left the campus, she assisted a study under University of Delhi to calculate the impact of socio-cultural and economic factors on the performance of students, wrote a research paper on the Stakeholders in Street-Begging as an intern in CCS, and bade farewell to the college after refurbishing its Economics Society since its dormant state of 4 years.
Aanchal realized early on that while her brain craves concepts of physics and economics, her heart goes for the social causes. To blend both she joined a start-up, School Country, as a product developer in Jaipur. After six months, not willing to settle in a domain without exploring her other interest areas, she joined the Gandhi Fellowship in Mumbai. For two years, she worked with 10 Headmasters of Municipal Schools, government officials on community building, and stayed with the slum-dwellers for two months. During this period, Vipassana meditation inspired her to initiate a project to connect senior citizens with children using oral history. For this, she got support from Global Action on Poverty, Kaivalya Education Foundation, Ashoka Foundation and Storywallahs.
Now, to kindle new ideas and reshape the old, she considers YIF as an important crossroad in her journey ahead.
She believes that:
“Your journey has moulded you for your greater good, and it was exactly what it needed to be. Don’t think that you’ve lost time. It took each and every situation that you’ve encountered to bring you to the now. And now is right on time.”
― Asha Tyson