Nageena Bano was still a child when her parents married her off. She belongs in Chanod village in Pali District Rajasthan. Her in laws abused her and treated her very badly. After she had a baby they threw her out of the house. She was completely alone and helpless. Remembering that she says, “I had nothing and the only thing I had to call my own was the little education I had received as a child. It was this education that helped me get a small job in the village and I was able to stand on my own two feet and be able to look after my little child.
I now have only one aim in life – what happened with me should not happen with my other sisters in the village.”
Today Nageena Bano is a champion for girls’ education and a catalyst for school reform. She is Team Balika.
What helped Nageena transform from an abused child bride to who she is today is education. It is what helps her reach true potential as an individual. It is this education that no one can beat, steal away from her. No flood, no famine, nothing can take it away. It is hers to use all her life and to empower her and give her a voice and independence.
She was able to transform her life but we know that she not the norm but an exception. Only 1 out of every 100 girls in India makes it to class 12! Which means, that all of us here are exceptions in this country. We are the 1%!
On behalf of the entire team of Educate Girls I would like to thank you for encouraging us in our journey to empower girls through education. So much has happened in the last few months that we wanted to briefly update you on the progress.
You will be pleased to know that in February I was invited by TEDxASB to speak to an audience of international educators about rejuvenating government schools. Here is a link to the talk, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xz7UP-Sgoko.
The Indian Philanthropy Forum’s (IPF) Annual Conference in March 2012 organized by Dasra gave me an opportunity to speak about the issues that adolescent girls in India face at a panel discussion titled “Owning Her Future: Empowering Adolescent Girls in India”. The IPF also saw the release of the Indian Philanthropy Report, 2012 published by Bain and Company. We are happy to report that Educate Girls is featured in the report! Please click - http://www.bain.com/publications/articles/india-philanthropy-report-2012.aspx.
Our programs are going strong with over 20,000 girls enrolled in schools since last year and almost 1186 teachers in Pali and Jalore trained in Creative Learning Techniques. In addition Educate Girls has launched a new initiative in December last year. As part of this, Educate Girls is building a cadre of village based education volunteers known as Team Balika. Over 500 Team Balika members have been recruited and trained across Pali and Jalore. These educated youth are champions for girl education and support Educate Girls’ programs to ensure enrollment and retention of every girl along with provision of quality education. We are delighted to share the Team Balika logo with you.
Our efforts and your support have been appreciated and recognized, we were nominated for the WomenChangeMakers Award and have also been shortlisted for the second stage of the Stars Impact Awards. The results will be declared soon!
We thank you for your continuous support and encouragement for every milestone achieved.
Sukhi, an 18 year old village based volunteer popularly known as Team Balika identified two girls in the village of Mohra who had never attended school. But the school headmaster refused admission to them on the grounds that the school was already in session and thegirls could come back in the next academic year. Sukhi immediately contacted the EducateGirls' regional office in Pali and spoke to staff member Miss Harshwardhane. Acting on her advice, Sukhi marched up to the headmaster's office the next day and demanded a written statement. Shocked by her confidence and taken aback by her complete lack of fear, he admitted the girls in the school. Sukhi is an inspiration to us all!
Thanks to your support and contributions we have achieved your fund raising goal and our field staff is working diligently to enroll the remaining 3210 out of school girls in Pali into transformed schools.
We have identified 19956 out of school girls in Jalore district of Rajasthan out of which 9346 have already been enrolled in schools. We request your continued support to help us enroll the remaining 10610 out of school girls into rejuvenated schools.
To overcome the challenge of working with first generation learners whose parents are unable to impact learning outcomes Educate Girls has created village based volunteers recognized as “Team Balika”
Team Balika are village based volunteers who facilitate scalable and sustainable community owned programs.
Team Balika encourage enrollment of girls in school by mentoring the girls as well as their parents. Team Balika along with the School Management Committees (SMCs), work towards creating girl friendly schools. Through their collaborating efforts of Team Balika and SMCs the number of schools with separate girls' toilets and drinking water facilities has increased from 44% to 71% and from 46% to 82% respectively.
For every girl that gets enrolled in school, there is one less a Child Bride. These champions for girl child education animate the principles of ‘My Village, My Problems and I am the Solution’. They spread awareness on the importance of girl child education and prevent girls from becoming child brides.
On behalf of the entire team of Educate Girls I would like to thank each one of you for encouraging us in our journey to empower girls. We are diligently moving towards our goal to improve access and quality of education for children living in underserved communities in India and towards closing the gender gap.
While the government invited us to scale our intervention to the neighboring Jalore district, in Pali we are only a few steps away from 100% girls’ enrollment. A year has passed and to date we have enrolled over 8,033 girls who are now enjoying their right to education. Thanks to your support we are also approaching our fund raising goal. There are only 3,210 girls remaining and we seek your ongoing support to bring them back to school!
You will be pleased to know that this year our efforts and your support have been appreciated and recognized by the EdelGive Social Innovation Honors, the World Banks’ Development Marketplace Award and the ‘Karmaveer Puraskar’.
Make a donation this Thanksgiving and help us prevent all remaining 3,210 out-of-school girls from becoming child brides.
We are thankful for every milestone achieved and the continuous and generous support from you.
Safeena HusainExecutive Director
Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating or by subscribing to this project's RSS feed.