In 2012, EGG expanded its school reform model into secondary schools, launching a pilot program in Uttarakhand, India. Read the stories about these young women who are attending EGG project schools despite financial, social and cultural challenges. See how education is impacting their lives and giving them hope for a better future.
From Early Marriage Plans to Returning to School
By the time Dimple was 13, her parents had plans for her to be married. “Without education, I knew my life would be just like my motherʼs,” she says. With EGGʼs support, Dimple can now pursue the bigger dreams she has for her future. “There is a teacher at my school and I want to be a teacher like her when I am older. I did not like staying at home as I had to do all the household tasks. I always thought about school and how I could learn a lot there.” says Dimple.
“When a community worker from EGG came to talk to my parents, I was finally able to tell them that I wanted to return to school. Since EGG talked to my parents, they are convinced that a girl should be educated. I am happy to be back in school”. Dimple still faces several challenges that her brothers do not have, yet she is determined to continue her education, despite the barriers she faces.
~ Dimple, 14 years old, Government High School, Uttarakhand, India
Seetha Re-Enrolls in School Despite Financial Hardship
A year ago, the financial condition of Seethaʼs family made it seem impossible to survive. “My parents and siblings all had to work to earn money. I stayed at home to cook, fetch water, graze the cattle etc. while all other children went to school. I always liked school and had many friends. I knew that [my studies] would improve the standard of life for me and my family. I wanted to earn enough money to sustain ourselves. I did not want to be like my mother!” says Seetha.
Under EGGʼs guidance, Seetha began to work to save money to pay her way through school. “Along with the housework, I began to cut wood and sell it in the market until I had enough savings to support myself. she recounts. Seetha is now happily re-enrolled in school, dedicated to her studies and doing well. Education will help me escape this daily struggle to get by,” she says.
~ Seetha, 14 years old, Government High School, Uttarakhand, India
Girls Parliament Boosts Self-Confidence and Leadership
“Everything changed when I joined the Girls Parliament. Now I have better self esteem, I have greater respect for others and I am motivated to be a better and more active citizen”. Renukaʼs new confidence is benefiting her entire school. “Now I have the confidence to make myself heard at school and at home. I teach the life skills exercises to the other students who are not in the Girls Parliament so they can share what I have learned. Iʼve made so many new friends in this way!” says Renuka.
“The problem for girls in our village is that they are kept home to do domestic work and [can not come] to school. My goal is to re-enroll all of the girls who have dropped out in my village. I believe a good leader should be able to inspire others to participate and be active.”
~ Renuka, 14 years old, Government High School, Uttarakhand, India