India has the highest rates in the world of sexual violence against women. For girls in rural Mewat, Haryana, if there is no school in her village she is forced to drop out. Parents will not allow their girls to walk to school due to the risk of sexual violence, and there is no affordable way for them to attend school outside of their village. Because of this, there is zero hope of a girl staying in school past sixth grade.
Blossom Bus has provided girls-only buses for safe transport to school since 2010. A proven-successful solution, the bus supports young women on their journey towards independence and economic stability. When a girl stays in school, this delays early marriage and young mothering. To date, we have transported more than 1200 girls to school, including 45 to college and eight studying at the Master's level!
Until secondary schools become available in all villages, the Blossom Bus aims to support girls at this transitional stage, leading the way in establishing female education as a norm rather than an anomaly. By supporting female education, the program mitigates gender imbalances, bolster individual self-esteem and foster a greater, more active role for women in society. The impacts of this program are far-reaching, reverberating across the economy and the futures of women and their children.
This project has provided additional documentation in a PDF file (projdoc.pdf).
Lotus Outreach Projects in India
Interview with Blossom Bus Manju @ Bhattki Village
Empowering Women Through Education