Back to School Appeal: Tackling Educational Inequality in India
Gwalior Children’s Society is one of the four carefully-selected charities to be featured in GlobalGiving UK’s Back to School Education Appeal, January-February 2013. Keval Bharadia from Gwalior has written an article (below) about the great work that is being done at the Snehalaya School.
You can donate directly to the appeal by following this link. You will can support the Appeal as a whole, or you can select Gwalior or one of the other featured charities. You can also donate by text from the UK: text GGEA13 £10 to 70070 to donate £10. You can change the value of donation if you wish.
When we heard that GlobalGiving had chosen Snehalaya School for their “Back to School Appeal” we were thrilled! We know that a huge number of applications were submitted to Global Giving for only 4 places. That ours was chosen above other, also very important, schooling projects around the developing world was a deep honour for us.
2 weeks into the appeal has seen us raise over £5,000. The appeal lasts until the end of February and so far we have benefited from GlobalGiving’s vast reach and generous donors. But we are in desperate need however to raise 10 times more than this by the end of the appeal.
Why do we need this? Because, our School, in India’s heartland, provides a vital link for thousands of young poor girls to lift themselves out of poverty, gain economic independence and sense of self-worth through education. There has been a lot of news and discussion recently about women in India since the death of the gang rape victim in December 2013. It has made India’s patriarchal society come under fierce criticism given the lack of compassion and action done by the Indian Government. We teach our girls, who all come from destitute and rural parts of Madhya Pradesh, India’s poor heartland, of their equal rights they have in Indian society despite the institutionalised patriarchy.
As Soutik Biswas, India’s BBC correspondence says, “clearly, many Indian women face threats to life at every stage – violence, inadequate healthcare, inequality, neglect, bad diet, lack of attention to personal health and well-being”* However, in India’s heartland, discrimination against women is worse where men can outnumber women 5 to 4 due to illegal abortions and baby killings because of “social values” according to Manmohan Singh, the Indian prime minister. In The ‘genocide’ of India’s daughters, Al Jazeera asks if the patriarchal mindset that runs across castes and class can be changed to prevent foeticide and infanticide. Watch the programme here.
We believe that by addressing inequality in education from an early age in women, they have more of a chance to manage the risks they are presented with. This includes enabling their economic, domestic, social and intellectual freedom through education.
We do hope you continue to be inspired by the work of our school and can donate towards the schooling of girls within India’s neglected and poor heartlands.
Gwalior Children’s Society