I cannot walk. I cannot even stand on my own. However, it was my mother, who believed that education could change my life too. Our neighbors and relatives criticized her for thinking about sending me, who could not even move her hands and legs, to school. My mother never gave up on me. Every day, since day one, she has carried me on her arms to school and brought me back home. My mother always says – ‘your education will bring light into your life.’ I do not feel weak anymore. I feel free.
- Himani Yadav (Alumna, Satya Bharti Govt. School, Neemrana. Now studying in Class 9)
(Himani has scored 88.33% in her 8th Board Exams and has been selected for Rajasthan Padmakshi Award and has secured a scholarship from the Government of Rajasthan. We congratulate Himani and her mother for making all of us proud and for inspiring hundreds of children in her village and beyond).
An African proverb says, “If you educate a man, you educate an individual. But if you educate a woman, you educate a nation.” Girls’ education makes a difference! Here’s why:
Reduce infant mortality: An educated woman is more aware, and an aware woman is more capable to take care of her child from the diseases he/she can get as an infant.
Reduce maternal mortality: An educated woman knows what is good for her, and even if she doesn’t she can always read things and gather knowledge and take care of health or any other expecting woman around her, which helps in reducing maternal mortality.
Improve socioeconomic growth: A girl or a woman who is educated can change the environment and can contribute in changing the entire socioeconomic paradigm around her.
Reduce child marriage: An educated girl knows the consequences of getting married too early and she can reduce it in her surroundings too by getting people aware of the disadvantages of child marriage. Educated girls typically marry later, when they are better able to bear and care for their children.
Reduce population explosion: If a woman or a girl gets even the secondary education, she gets aware of the disadvantages of having more children. It is likely that a literate woman has lesser children and ensures that they are being educated.
Decrease malnutrition: Educated women are aware about the benefits of diet, nutrition, health and hygiene. They ensure that their children have access to proper nutrition to stay healthy.
Furthermore, a literate woman:
-can increase improvement in political process.
-can reduce domestic & sexual violence.
-are much abler to influence their future.
-are better equipped to contribute to the family income.
-can contribute and prosper their community.
Swami Vivekananda once said, “There is no chance of the welfare of the world unless the condition of women is improved. It is not possible for a bird to fly on one wing.” It is imperative for us as the entire human society that we not only give girls an equal chance, but also promote their welfare, so that we as humankind can reach new heights of development and progress.