In his seventeen short years, this Hills student has developed an attitude that is going to take him places! After growing up in Punjab, India, then moving to the United Arab Emirates, Abhay has experienced lots of lifestyles.

He saw first-hand the intense poverty on the streets and need for charity and action to help those who live without the things we take for granted. Now a student in Australia, he feels “even a small action can make a difference”. As an example he cites his need to just get a rubbish bag and pick up litter in his own school playground. An unusually bold act from a generation so peer driven – he doesn’t need to run with the crowd. He is burningly passionate about creating change, “Without seeking a result or recognition.

That’s what leadership is!” A mantra he repeated often in our talk together. On the streets for the Red Shield Appeal, volunteering for Whiteline International or entertaining with his guitar at ACIA open mike nights, Abhay wants to make that difference. His volunteering has also taken him to overseas labour camps distributing basic life supplies of pulses, rice, soap and water. He glows about the smiles he brought to people’s faces. He also loves to listen to rock and cover songs and then pick them with his guitar and entertain.

His younger brother has been known to drum along. “It’s a big dream to play anything and everything. I want to motivate others to achieve their best.” He loves to perform voluntarily at any venue, “People love it and it becomes a platform to voice opinion.” In Year 11 he started a school-based guitar club, all about youth sharing music and direction together. The experience has given him a teacher’s perspective. Now he sees it as a way to give pleasure and entertain, while critically, getting young people involved. “There is so much they can do! Simply getting things done in the right time and right place equals impact!”

His time at Cherrybrook Technology High School was memorable for vocational studies, to taste industry culture which he credits for acquiring“clarity of speech and getting out of the bubble.”He finds his Hindu faith; family support and TED talks inspiring and says there are two actions you can take when you see something in your neighbourhood that needs improvement. “You can walk past, but if you take action, no-one stops you. Start; it rolls from there…” With HSC exams over, and hoping for a great result in Physics, he is looking to study astrophysics at one of our top universities. “While my friends are often spending time on relaxing pursuits I am not happy without a list of achievements I can tick off every day.

If I aim for the moon, at least I can land among the stars!”