How Education Changes Lives
Over the years of my social work, I have seen a lot, interacted a lot and identified the changes myself. Education is a single big factor that has the potential to bring about a lasting change in the lives of people. In my various projects, I have met a lot of people who came out of their miserable lives and made a better future for themselves. Today, I will be sharing one such story of a young girl Shivani whom I met in the year 2014.
Shivani lives in a squatter settlement in a very small village of Ara district in Bhojpur. She has one elder brother and one younger brother. Both of her brothers go to school but her parents didn’t send her along. That is because of the deep-rooted discrimination and stereotype against the female gender in most of the parts of the country. Women are denied equal opportunities in life. Boys are considered to be the heir of a family hence he’s provided with better opportunities and better options. Parents think girls will marry and go away to another house and all the money they spent in sending girls to school will only benefit an outside family. So they only send their sons to school. There are thousands like Shivani in our society.
When we met Shivani we saw this girl who was very quiet but had some eagerness in the eyes as if she wanted to tell us something. We asked her parents if she attends a school and they replied in negative. We asked them why she doesn’t attend the school to which her father replied that they don’t send their girls to school and wasn’t their tradition. Sending her to school will bring no good to either them or her. We tried a lot to convince them and acquaint them with the benefits of education. They were not convinced.
But we didn’t just give up. After a few days, we went to them again and were successful this time. It was her mother who convinced her husband to let her girl study. She said that she will make sure that her girl is provided the opportunities that she herself was denied. She won’t let her girl face the same difficulties that she herself faced. Thus began the journey of CHANGE. The social barriers were broken. Shivani was admitted to a school nearby and she is doing well in studies. With small efforts like these, the lives and destinies of individuals, as well as families, can be changed. It was because of her mother’s strong determination, persistence, and support to her daughter that helped her to attend a school and aspire for a better future.
These small steps serve in achieving greater goals. Awareness about the importance of education is a must. Every child has the right to go to school and learn. Education offers children a ladder out of poverty and a path to a promising future. Education is the first step towards ending generational cycles of poverty. Educating a girl not only improves her life but the lives of her family and even her community more broadly.