Sewing clothes at a tailoring shop
13 year old Zahida sits at her station in a clothes tailoring shop, holding the wheel of the sewing machine steady for a few seconds while she adjusts the thread to finish sewing a dress her Ustaad (master tailor) will later sell. At the end of the month, Zahida earns USD 30, a sorely needed addition to her family’s monthly income of 100 USD which is barely enough to support her 10 member household. Each dress takes at least 5 hours to complete, leaving Zahida enough time in the day to attend school.
Zahida is a student at a Zindagi Trust school in Lahore, Pakistan, This school specializes in non-formal education for working children, covering basic primary education in an accelerated two year course. It was through a recruitment campaign that our Zindagi Trust team in Lahore found Zahida at the tailoring shop and encouraged her to join the program. Zahida had never been to school before because her father, a construction worker and sole earner of the family, had been unable to afford the fee. Now in the equivalent of fourth grade, Zahida spends three hours at the school every day after her shift at the shop. Upon graduation, she will be able to enroll in a secondary school to continue her education.
Her teachers regularly praise her dedication, sharp mind, and ability to learn quickly, qualities that have allowed her to excel in school, especially in her Urdu Language classes. We hope that the same qualities will allow Zahida to fulfill her two goals in life: becoming a teacher who serves Pakistan and providing her family financial support to lead comfortable life.“Getting an education has allowed me to understand the world around me. I learnt from someone and I would love if one day someone learnt from me too” she says, speaking about her ambitions to become a teacher for young children.
Thank you for helping us support Zahida’s education. Please donate to provide Zahida and other eager students like her the chance to choose their own future and realize the professional ambitions.
In her favorite Urdu Language class