Meet 10-year-old Prasidhhi, India’s youngest fruit forest creator and Rashtriya Bal Puraskar awardee


By Roshni Chakrabarty: Sometimes, the drive to save the planet strikes you young, and your life changes. When Prasidhhi Singh was just four, the Vadra Cyclone hit the shores of Tamil Nadu.

“I saw trees getting uprooted. The road was flooded, and I saw birds, squirrels, and monkeys running, flying and jumping for shelter. My heart wept out, and I decided I have to do something about it,” says the 10-year-old.

Serious about doing something for the planet, Prasidhhi started participating in multiple tree plantation drives at the age of 4. That same year, she planted 1 lakh trees along with other residents in Tamil Nadu’s Mahindra World City, where she resides.

“I discovered and gained acceptable knowledge such as about the germination process, sapling creation, how all the materials are sourced, how the nursery is actually built, how these are maintained — from the watering to the weeding and fencing, and how an entire plantation is organised,” she explains.

In 2018, at the age of 6, she founded the Prasidhhi Forest Foundation with two missions.

(Photo: Instagram/@prasiddhiforest)

Her first mission is to keep planting trees to increase Earth’s green cover and enhance biodiversity until it becomes part of our culture. Her second mission is to bring people together and spread awareness about the importance of protecting the environment until it is integrated into our literature.

Through her foundation, Prasidhhi has planted one lakh trees including over 20 mini forests, and organised over 600 awareness sessions, connecting with more than 40,000 people across India.

Prasidhhi has a wide range of stakeholders who support her extensively to make her dream a success – from villagers, farmers and NGOs to corporates, students of all ages, and government officials.

“It’s action-oriented. It’s a movement,” she says.

The younger generations have been increasingly coming forward to take the helm of the ship to battle climate change. And at just 10 years of age, Prasidhhi is a force to be reckoned with.

In 2021, the Tamil Nadu girl became the youngest awardee of the Pradhan Mantri Rashtriya Bal Puraskar. She was also featured in the India Book of Records for being the youngest fruit forest creator in the country.

On Earth Day 2023, she was featured in National Geographic’s influential short film series on young changemakers titled ‘One For Change’.

The Class 6 student studies at Mahindra World School in Chenglapattu, Tamil Nadu, and lives with her father, an IIT Madras alumnus, and her mother, both of whom work at Mahindra.

(Photo: Instagram/@prasiddhi.official)


Prasidhhi believes that nature is the foundation of everything, be it art, technology, or innovation.

“Nature is the point where everything is rooted, be it art or technology, or innovation. Everything is rooted to nature, to environment, and the planet,” she says.

Prasidhhi talks about how trees across Earth have their own ‘www’, the ‘wood wide web’. She cites examples such as how birds taught us how to fly and beavers taught us how to create dams, and highlights how nature has already solved problems that we are still struggling with.

“If we look at autonomous vehicles, we are still struggling with the safety perspective. But nature has it already figured out. Have you ever wondered why a colony of ants coming from two different directions, do not crash or bang into each other?” she says.

“That is because of a pheromone network, a chemical reaction due to which they can non-verbally communicate with each other and alert each other,” Prasidhhi explains.

“We all root to nature, and we all need to protect, preserve, and learn from it,” adds the young changemaker.

Prasidhhi was part of the G20 Youth 20 Consultation at IIT Kanpur as the “youngest delegate” among the 1500 participants from across India and abroad. (Photo: Instagram/@prasiddhi.official)

While Prasidhhi’s achievements are impressive considering her young age, what’s even more inspiring is her passion and dedication to the cause. She is an example of how even the youngest among us can make a significant impact on the world.

And this is what her message to people is all about: “We all need to believe in the power we have. Rather than just questioning other people about what they are doing, we need to work on ourselves and look at our responsibilities and duties.”

“I have always taken challenges as learning opportunities. When I launched Prasidhhi Forest Foundation, I used a range of activities to generate awareness such as writing eco quotes on tree-shaped papers and distributing them, developing eco kits or grow kits to give to people, doing awareness workshops and sessions, etc,” she says.

She utilised any available platform to generate awareness for her cause. It is her passion for the planet that drives her.

“I believe that even if one person turns up at a session I am giving and says ‘I am going to heal the earth’ or ‘I want to do some projects with you’, it is a remarkable achievement for me,” Prasidhhi says.

(Photo: Instagram/@prasiddhi.official)

Citing the motto of One For Change – ‘Change begins with one’, she reminds us how the tiny bees allow for food production through pollination, how microscopic fungi in soil take part in symbiosis for entire forests to stand, and how planktons in water can produce as much oxygen as a mid-sized forest despite being so small.

“It has been 75 years since the independence of our nation, but we are still blaming, debating and asking for our rights,” she says.

“We need to believe in our strength, and we need to become those small 4 mm seeds that have the potential to grow into 400-foot-tall trees,” says the youngster.

Now, Prasidhhi wants to meet global leaders like Anand Mahindra, Jane Goodall, and Ameenah Gurib-Fakim to learn more from them and share ideas on how to heal the planet. As we face the biggest threat to our planet, we need more young people like Prasidhhi to lead the charge and make a difference.

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