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
On October 19th, it is GlobalGiving's LAST Bonus Day of the year! Starting at 12:01 am EDT, GlobalGiving will be matching all donations (up to $1,000 per donor, per project) at 30%. GlobalGiving has $100,000 available in matching funds. Don't miss a special opportunity to make a small donation with a big impact!
Lately, we posted the story of Timi, a 13-year old girl from the tribal belt in Rajasthan. The fact that Timi is a farmer's only child and a girl reduces the chance that her parents will ever let her go to school, because who would then tend the goats? And who would do all the hard work young girls in rural India are often condemned to? Nevertheless, our field workers keep on visiting her home regularly and try convincing her father to enroll his girl at least part-time, a deal that can often be agreed on.
This was the case with Leela, a 15-year old girl, now part-time enrolled to a public school in Bali tribal belt, Rajasthan. Her parents finally agreed on sending her to school half a day, so she could still manage to do her duties.
In the morning, she studies Hindi, English and Maths. Very eager to learn, she has made great progress and grown a confident young lady. Leela was recently elected as one of the school’s Bal Sabhas members. As a girl’s leader she participates in life skills activites and motivates other girls to learn.
Back home in the afternoon, she helps her sisters with the rural girl’s everyday duties: fetching water and collecting fire wood for the evening meal. Finally having time for homework, Leela teaches her younger sisters what she has learned at school.
There are still more than 5000 girls out there in rural Rajasthan with the potential of Leela. Normally, a donation of 30$ will send 10 girls to school, providing them with a basic education and turning them into an active part of society. On October 19th however – with a little luck and fingers crossed – GlobalGiving will multiply the impact of your donation.
Thanks again for your support.
Here's a sneak-peak into life of one of the many farmers' girls from the tribal belt in Rajasthan. Timi is an only child, her father suffers from a handicapped foot and is unable to work. Her mother leaves the village every day for a small town nearby where she carries out general level work to procure the family’s miniscule daily wages.
2 Educate Girls interns recently spent a day with Timi at her home to learn more about the daily life of a non-school going girl in rural India. They watched her carry out her duties from the cleaning of the family home and preparation of rotis before sunrise to the feeding and milking of the family’s goats, collection of water and firewood, preparation of the family dinner and another cleanup of the home before taking rest.
Particularly unsettling was a moment when Timi, on the farm tending to the goats, witnessed a band of girls walking together in uniform to the local school.
When asked, Timi described her feeling toward her current situation as “confused and torn” – she feels a very strong sense of duty to her mother and father but would also love to be at school with the other children her age. Without and education she voiced that she sees a future of early marriage, children and the same repetitive daily duties that she undertakes today.
Educate Girls recognizes the enormity of work of, in particular, farming families and how valuable a resource the children are on the farms. Many individual cases have been negotiated between Educate Girls and the out-of-school-girl families, in which girls may attend a half-day at school so that house and farm work does not suffer. On this particular day, Timi’s father approached Educate Girls to discuss the prospect of re-enrolling Timi in school.
Every 5th girl in rural Rajasthan is married at the age of 15. Ponri was not only lucky, she was determined not to end as a child bride, but to fight for an education. Her story is an impressive journey of how to become a role model for girls.
58 million young women in developing countries – 1 in 3 – have been married before the age of 18 in the last decade, many against their will and in violation of the law. This is the sad reality underlined by the latest figures from thePopulation Reference Bureau. In Rajasthan, 1 in 5 young women who are now ages 20 to 24 say they had been married by their 15th birthday. With limited education and economic opportunities, child brides are not only condemned to a life of poverty, but one of social isolation, and powerlessness, infringing on their human rights, health, and well-being.
Ponri is one of the many young women who would have normally envisaged a lonely life as a pre-adult bride. She is the youngest of 8 children. Her 4 brothers and 3 sisters have never seen a school from the inside, so the last thing her father had planned for her was a school career; economical resources were limited and he felt that his youngest daughter was required to help at home until she reached the age to serve at her prospective husband's house. But Ponri had other plans. She was determined to go to school. Realizing that there was no chance, her father would ever let her go to school, at 13, Ponri ran away from home twice, hoping to find a hideout at one of the Shiksha Mitra Kendra’s. “If I wouldn’t have run away, I would be married by now, tending goats out in the nowhere”, she says. This is when Ranaram, an Educate Girls Field Coordinator took up on Ponri. He visited her family over and over again.
Eventually, her father could no longer take the continuous visits and agreed to let her go to school. “Thanks to Ranaram’s persistence, I could make my ambition turn into reality” says Ponri, and with a shy smile on her face she admits: “Even if I went through tough times, I know now, that it is worth fighting. I want to be a teacher to encourage other girls to fight for their education”.
Due to her strong will and after a myriad of visits from the Ranaram, Ponri's father finally agreed for the sake of his peace and quiet. Being the first father to send his girl to school, he had initially been afraid of what the community would say. But now, as his daughter is doing so well, he admits that he too feels proud of her.
Ponri's father admits: “I feel a little proud in the community, people look up to me now. I also appreciate the health and hygiene tips my daughter provides me.”
The ambitious girl has managed to catch up with the other 5th grade students in only 2 years. Today she leads the Bal Sabha group as “Bal Panch” and motivates other girls to fight for their own education.
Help us to reach out for more girls like Ponri!
We have done it! Eventually the moment has arrived to tell you about some great news: Foundation to Educate Girls Globally is now simply Educate Girls. We are proud to introduce our brand new website Educategirls.in to you!
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