May 6, 2016

Meet the School Staff

Principal and Vice Principal of Shree Bhumimata
Principal and Vice Principal of Shree Bhumimata

Our needs assessment is in full swing!

A crucial part of project development is communicating with local stakeholders and ensuring their needs and concerns are heard. Aura Freedom is committed to this participatory approach and has met with school officials at the site of Shree Bhumimata School's collapsed remains on several occasions to discuss our project and its goals.

Kalyan, the school’s Vice Principal, has provided our staff with much insight into the reality of the dire situation for young girls at the school:

“Girls here are leaving school in Class 6 - as young as 11 and 12 - to get married. We hate to see them give up their education. If we continue with rebuilding our school and training staff, we can keep them in school longer and stop child marriage, a huge problem in this community.”

The issue of child marriage is one which Aura Freedom is intent on tackling with this new school. Having access to a safe, fully functioning facility in which to attend daily lessons, including gender-specific toilets, is essential to reducing the dropout rate of young girls.

In addition, when teachers undergo capacity building and receive gender sensitivity training, they become better equipped to foster an environment that promotes gender equality and rejects discrimination. In doing so, they also become more attentive, compassionate, and well-rounded educators to all their students. This all contributes to keeping girls in school longer and ultimately reducing the rate of child marriage in the community.

Aura Freedom is also committed to making this school as structurally sustainable as possible. Stay tuned for upcoming info on our collaboration with solar architects!

As we continue with our needs assessment, help us continue to provide a safe, promising future for the children of Nepal by donating today. Thank you for your generous support of this much-needed project – we are off to a wonderful start!

  

Founder, Marissa, at the school with senior staff
Founder, Marissa, at the school with senior staff
An education protects girls from child marriage
An education protects girls from child marriage
Gender training for teachers helps girls flourish
Gender training for teachers helps girls flourish

Links:

Apr 29, 2016

A year since the earthquake and we're still here

A young mother and child pose outside their tent.
A young mother and child pose outside their tent.

One year since the lives of so many changed.

April 25, 2015 - Nepal Earthquake

A year later, Aura Freedom is still here on the ground, supporting women and girls as they rebuild their lives. In times of emergency, females suffer the most and face increased violence, abuse and marginalization. 

Our Female Friendly Spaces are still open and now part of a powerful Outreach program, protecting and upholding the dignity and human rights of Nepal's displaced women and girls.

It always amazes us to see the strength and determination of these amazing women and girls to better their lives and push forward. We are inspired by the way they have picked up the pieces, persevered and held their heads up high

The media may have stopped reporting, but life is still tough for many in Nepal. But, as we always say, WOMEN ARE WARRIORS. 

Stories of Strength: RABINA (photo below)

Rabina and her family were displaced when they lost their home in last year's earthquake. Through the education she received in Aura Freedom's Female Friendly Space, Rabina is now an advocate for gender equality and the abolition of child marriage. She has also learned to knit and sells her colourful creations for income.

But, perhaps the most amazing thing about Rabina is her continued dedication to learning more, knowing more, and becoming a champion for change for women in Nepal. Amazing.

 

To help more women like Rabina, donate to our Female Friendly Space project now to have your donation 100% matched by GlobalGiving. Matching funds won't last long! Donate below.

 

Watch an INTERVIEW with our founder Marissa in Nepal, describing our work in post-earthquake camps. (link below)

 

Thank you for helping us through this difficult year. We could not have done it without your support. 

Three mothers learn in our Female Friendly Space.
Three mothers learn in our Female Friendly Space.
A woman carries supplies to her home in the camp.
A woman carries supplies to her home in the camp.
The strength of our participants amazes us.
The strength of our participants amazes us.
Meet Rabina, now a child marriage advocate.
Meet Rabina, now a child marriage advocate.
View of one of the camps where Aura Freedom works.
View of one of the camps where Aura Freedom works.

Links:

Feb 5, 2016

Validating Their Existence in an Official Way

Assisting Women in Obtaining Personal Documents to Combat Gender-Based Violence

Our post-earthquake Female Friendly Spaces are providing more than just protection, education, empowerment and support. They are now providing local women and children with Vital Registration documents such as birth certificates, marriage certificates and more. These documents are the first step to independence and empowerment for many women in Nepal.

The importance of vital regstration documents to women and girls here in Nepal is immense, yet it is not always easy to obtain them due to poverty and inequality. Without them, women cannot claim ownership of land or homes, they cannot exercise their rights and they are more vulnerable to human trafficking, exploitation and abuse from spouses.

Everyday, we are registering the women and children in the camps where our Female Friendly Spaces are located. By providing them with crucial documents, we are giving them the opportunity to take control of their own future and begin to feel and BE independant from oppressive situations.

Thank you for contributing to this astounding progress for women in Nepal. I am so grateful.

Sincerely,

Marissa Kokkoros - Founding Director

Our staff records names of all women & children.
Our staff records names of all women & children.
A woman listens to awareness on vital registration
A woman listens to awareness on vital registration
A baby girl in our Alchi Danda shelter.
A baby girl in our Alchi Danda shelter.

Links:

 
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