Aatish Gurung

Aatish Gurung - 2019 Nominee
Position: Communications Fellow
Organization: International Planned Parenthood Federation
Current Location: New York, United States
Bachelors of Science from City College of City University of New York
Additional Degrees and Certifications:
University of South Wales
Masters of Public Health, 2021 candidate
Awards Received:
  • Award:
    President's Volunteer Service Award
    Awarding Organization:
    Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) & Points of Light
    Date Awarded:
    January 1, 2016
  • Award:
    CUNY Service Corps
    Awarding Organization:
    City University of New York Research Foundation
    Date Awarded:
    May 5, 2015
  • Award:
    STEM-Career Development Initiative
    Awarding Organization:
    City College of New York
    Date Awarded:
    August 1, 2014
75 Public Votes Reached!
He brings a diverse expertise on SRHR from grassroots level to international platform. He first immersed to the field when he was an adolescent at IPPF South Asia in Bhutan. Then he went on to work for Planned Parenthood of NYC & eventually IPPF/WHR – Nominator
Describe your contributions to and achievements in family planning.

From early years I've worked with NGO supporting in the implementation of friendly services which include SRHR, social justice & youth development. During HS, as the Health Captain I assisted my teacher & individually coordinated iron tablet distribution throughout the school of 1500 students. I would update the health board with articles on menstruation, CSE, HIV & STDs. When possible, I provided students with free menstrual pads.
During college, I interned at Planned Parenthood of NYC. I worked with board members & independently ran the annual NYC borough risk management survey which was used to better understand the scope of the agency's work in NYC. At IPPF/WHR I was primarily responsible for communication management where I wrote briefs & reports, conducted research & rep. at the UN

What sparked your passion for family planning?

Growing up I would visit my village in rural Southern Bhutan where I observed young girls as early as 15-year-old getting married & women on their mid-twenties already on their 5th child. I saw families growing up in poverty & based on my elementary SexEd, I wished they knew & had easy access to contraceptive. During High School, I was fortunate enough to attend the first ever SRHR workshop hosted by IPPF S-Asia. It wasn't just about youth activism but the beginning of the road to self-discovery

Give one or two examples of how you display leadership in your family planning work.:

Being part of the Planned Parenthood Activist Council provided me with the opportunity to advocate for SRHR policies. I frequently spoke with local Rep. & made trips to Albany & DC to lobby for SRHR bills. I also rallied for progressive bills that led to NY paid family leave policy. Policies that required schools to provide free menstrual products & Comprehensive K-12 SexEd. My passion also led me to the UN as the Youth Delegate for 2yrs, advocating for SRHR & gender rights

If you are named a winner of 120 under 40, how will you use this new platform and the $1000 grant to advance your work? :

Youth Activism have always been an agent of change. Every1 is POWERED & fully capable to lead change within their communities. But the lack of access to proper knowledge & tools still remains one of the biggest challenge. Everyday we see safe abortion access being attacked in every part of the world. So, with the grant, I intend to organize advocacy & action workshop for youths to expand access to safe legal abortion in regions where abortion is highly stigmatized & criminalized.

Photos of the nominee in the field/at work
Planned Parenthood of New York City Activist Council At Capitol Hill, to tell Senators that the new health plan bill would take health insurance away from 22 million people, gut Medicaid, and defund Planned Parenthood—making it harder for people around the country, especially low-income people and people of color, to access the health care they need. NYC Pride March

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