DIL has helped transformed the lives of so many girls in Pakistan and embarked them on a journey of self-actualization. Asia Janwari, a graduate student of DIL Janwri Goth School is one of them. She has demonstrated the true spirit of self-help that our curricuum integrates at every level. Over the last two years, DIL has been supporting graduate students with micorloans. Asia herself opened a shop in her home, after prolonged negotiations with her parents. Now she is an income generating individual in her household.
With the help of her principal, a loan of Rs 5,000 ($50) was arranged for which she used to get going. She is managing her shop very well now and she has upgraded it and stocked it with basic necessities, confectionary and handicraft items which she makes herself including quilting and and embroidery items. Asia is meeting her monthly repayment plan of Rs 1,000 monthly ($10) and has almost paid off the initial loan.
When she was asked about why she initially left school, Asia responded: "My younger sister was diagnosed with heart disease. I left school to help support her medical needs. She is making a promising recovery and is now going to school at the nursery level. I have also decided to continue my studies by enrolling in middle school. I am so much more confident after running the shop and I thnk my teachers for supporting me."
Sumaira Shaheen lived in Bunni Behk Village in Pakistan’s Punjab province. Her father taught Arabic and with his meager income, he could hardly feed a family of 11. Education was a luxury the family couldn’t afford. To make matters worse, her father believed that girls should not be educated because they become rebellious and disobedient. So Sumaira, along with her eight siblings, did not go to school. The staff at a local DIL school came to know about the new residents in the village and came by to visit. They reasoned with the family to agree to send the girls to school. Given the family’s financial situation, Sumaira and all her sisters enrolled free of cost. Sumaira is now 12 years old and in Fourth Grade. She is an intelligent girl ranks at the top of her class.
12 year old Noor-ul-hudda lives in Sagyoon Village in southern Pakistan. When Noor was only three years old, her father suffered business losses and went into debt. The family suddenly found itself very poor. When a DIL school opened in her village, Noor’s mother put her to work with a food cart outside the school. A teacher noticed her and asked Noor why she wasn't erolled. Moved by her condition, the teacher assured her that the school would provide for her expenses. Noor registered for kindergarten the next day while she continued to man the food cart during break.
“Now my parents are very happy to see me studying and supporting my family. I am thankful to my teachers for their support,” shares Noor.
Dilshad is the second youngest of 10 siblings in a poor southern village in Pakistan. She did very well in a DIL school all the way through Eighth Grade. She wanted to continue but family members intervened and Dilshad was forced to stay home to tend for her sick mother. A motivated girl, she did not give up. She asked DIL for a scholarship and promised her family that she would do her share of the chores. They relented and she enrolled in high school.
Dilshad now wakes up early, fixes breakfast for everyone and then gets ready for school. When she gets back, she does the household chores and supports her family by sewing and doing embroidery. However, she continues to be at the top of her class. Dilshad aim is to ensure girls in her village have the right to go to school.
Because of your support, DIL can continue to provide girls like Dishad, Noor and Sumaira with the quality education they deserve. As 2012 comes to a close, we find ourselves grateful for your generosity and humbled by the thousands of DIL students and teachers whose indomitable spirits inspire us all.
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