Today India celebrates National Day of the Girl Child – a day of celebration to increase awareness among people about all the inequalities faced by girls in our society.
Nowhere is gender inequality more apparent, nor perhaps more damaging, than in education where on average a girl in India can expect to receive just 4 years of education in her lifetime. As a consequence she has little hope for an independent future and is vulnerable to serious exploitation including child labour and early marriage. In fact, 68% of girls are married before the legal age in Rajasthan, and 15% before they even reach their 10th birthday.
These awful statistics are poignantly brought to life in the picture you can see above, which was drawn by Gauri – a 9 year-old girl from Pali in Rajasthan – who was asked to draw her thoughts on education as part of a drawing competition organised by the NGO Educate Girls.
On the left, she crayoned a boy and a girl walking around a sacred fire, the symbol of Hindu weddings. On the girls chest you can see a mangal sutra, which is the necklace worn by married women. Both children seem unhappy and even though they are holding hands, their faces look forlorn and helpless. On the right hand side of the paper, Gauri drew the same children but this time they are smiling happily, wearing school uniforms, and walking towards a building where the words ‘Rajasthan High School’ are written.
Fortunately, Gauri is one of the thousands of girls now benefiting from the life-changing work carried out by Educate Girls. The organisation reforms government schools through community ownership, leveraging existing resources, empowering rural communities and mobilising local youth volunteers as positive ambassadors for education. The result? In just five years Educate Girls have helped over 58,000 girls return to school or enrol for the first time, dramatically improving their prospects for the future, while at the same time reducing the immediate risks of early marriage and child labour.
Here at LetzChange we are proud to be working with this fantastic, high-impact NGO. That’s why as part of our recently launched Spotlight Campaign we are matching all donations made to Educate Girls. For example, if you donate Rs. 500, LetzDream will add another Rs. 500, doubling the impact of your donation!
For just Rs. 250 you can send an out of school girl child back to school. Why not celebrate National Day of the Girl Child today by making a donation to Educate Girls on LetzChange?
Click here to donate and change a life now!