Ruchira Gupta is an Emmy-winning journalist and founder of the anti-sex trafficking NGO Apne Aap, which empowers women and girls to exit systems of prostitution. I Kick and I Fly is her debut fiction novel.

She has been awarded the French Ordre National du Mérite, the Clinton Global Citizen Award, and the UN NGO CSW Woman of Distinction, among other honors, for her contribution to the establishment of the UN Trafficking Fund for Survivors, the passage of the US Trafficking Victims Protection Act and her grassroots activism with Apne Aap. She also holds a Doctor of Humane Letters degree from Smith College. She has co-written a book with Gloria Steinem, “As if Women Matter” and edited two anthologies, “River of Flesh” and “Renu’s letters to Birju Babu.”

Ruchira has worked for the United Nations in Nepal, Thailand, Kosovo, Iran, and the USA. She occasionally teaches at the New York University’s Center for Global Affairs as a visiting faculty. She divides her time between New York and Forbesganj, her childhood home in the foothills of the Himalayas, where she furthers the work of Apne Aap and paints her mother’s garden.

Speaking Topics

  • Human Rights and Social Justice:
  • Sex Trafficking: The Global Perspective
  • Policy Frameworks to Combat Human Trafficking
  • Shifting the Blame: From Victims to Perpetrators
  • Women’s Rights in Developing Countries

Topics on Journalism and Media

  • The Role of Journalism in Social Justice
  • Emmy to Activism: The Power of Storytelling
  • Media Influence on Gender Issues

Topics on Literature and Writing

  • Creating Fiction with Purpose: Writing “I Kick and I Fly”
  • Working with Gloria Steinem: Feminism in Literature
  • The Power of Anthologies in Highlighting Social Issues

Topics on Education

  • The Importance of Education for Women and Girls in Red-Light Areas
  • Engaging with Academia: From NYU to Grassroots Activism

Public Policy and Law

  • Influencing Global Policy: UN Protocols and National Laws
  • Legislation for Empowerment: US Trafficking Victims Protection Act
  • India’s Evolving Legal Landscape on Human Trafficking

Personal Development and Leadership

  • Leadership in Activism: Building and Growing Apne Aap
  • Balancing Multiple Roles: From Faculty Member to Frontline Activist

Art and Creativity

  • Painting Mother’s Garden: Creativity as a Source of Solace and Inspiration
  • The Intersection of Art and Activism

International Relations and Global Affairs

  • Working with the United Nations: Lessons in International Activism
  • Global Trends in Human Trafficking: A Comparative Study

Culture and Identity

  • The Importance of Roots: New York to Forbesganj
  • Cultural Sensitivities in Humanitarian Work

Technology and Modern Solutions

  • The Role of Technology in Combating Sex Trafficking
  • Digital Platforms: A New Frontier for Activism?

To book Ruchira Gupta, contact Rob Firing at