Sabahat and her mother
Sabahat wants to be a teacher. And, thanks to her GlobalGiving donors, to Tiljala SHED's dedicated team and to her parents, this is looking entirely possible.
In India, the school dropout rate amongst adolescent girls is as high as 63.5% and in underprivileged minority communities like Sabahat's the rate is even higher. Girls from very poor families drop out of school for a number of reasons:
- The school is just too far away
- Boys are favoured over girls, so the boys attend school but the girls stay at home
- Child marriage. 4.4 million girls under 15 are married with at least 2 children
- Lack of segregated toilets is a major cause of girls dropping out of school
An educated girl avoids early marriage and is empowered to stand up against exploitation. As they grow children are able to make better choices for themselves and influence the communities they live in.
Sabahat's mother knows this. She struggles to feed and clothe her family on the £20 a week her husband earns in a chappal (sandal) factory. The family of five lives in a single 10 sq ft room in the Darapara slum but Sabahat's mother is a smart, cheerful and optimistic woman who wants much more for her daughter than to perpetuate the cycle of poverty and drudgery so she applied to Tiljala SHED to put her daughter on the sponsorship programme.
So for the past 2 years, your contributions have helped provide all the necessary expenses to keep her in education: tuition fees, costs of books and stationery, travel expenses, uniform and shoes. She also benefits from health check-ups, group activities and occasional events and excursions.
Sabahat graduated from high school this summer and is now attending Calcutta University. She is on her way to achieving her dream of becoming a teacher.
I meet up with Sabahat and her mother whenever I visit Kolkata. They are such a cheerful and determined pair that I am certain that with your help Sabahat will achieve her dream and become a teacher.
School Graduation Certificate