As a part of the campaign school education minister Dr Premsai Tekam has launched an array of life skills materials that Room to Read India has been designing as part of the Covid-19 outreach and commitment towards girls’ education.
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“I urge girls to take a vow to study with all their heart, to never let anything stop them, and to become leaders in their communities. Let us come together to help our girls. Har Kadam Beti Ke Sang Leadership Ki Tarang”, said school education minister Dr Premsai Tekam.
“In 2021, the campaign is entering a new phase -This year we celebrate the countless efforts and initiatives taken by young girls to become a leader in their own right. Our girls have not only continued their education but have become role models for their peers and communities. We salute their commitment and passion. We congratulate them on their efforts to continue their studies, to resist early marriage and to take care of their health in these difficult times”, said Room to Read India country director Sourav Banerjee.
The campaign has bought powerful leadership stories of girls and their families in Chhattisgarh. One such is of Geeta, a bright and diligent student of 10th standard, who lost her father to the coronavirus. She always aspired to be a doctor and serve the people in the best of her capacities for which she has always been participative in health related initiatives in her village. The loss that Geeta and her family bore was irreplaceable. Yet, Geeta had to toughen her shoulders to bear the responsibility of her mother and little ones in her family. With time, Geeta and her mother joined the Anganwadi workers to spread awareness about the virus. Geeta and her mother strived hard so that nobody had to bear the loss due to Covid-19. Geeta also started stitching masks and distributing them among children in her village. Besides, she now lives to study and work hard, for herself and for her father, who till his last breath cared about every student’s education as much as he cared about his own daughter’s.
Another such inspiring story is of Chitralekha hailing from a small village in Chhattisgarh. The very day that Chitralekha turned 16, her life saw a downfall from the very moment the mother uttered the words, “marriage”. A myriad of obnoxious feelings took over, her dreams, her aspirations; all of them came crumbling down to nothing. Chitralekha stood tall and with the support of her brother and the R2R India team ensured that the marriage was called off and she continued to pursue her education. This campaign intends to reach out to all vulnerable girls like Chitralekha.
Meanwhile, the wtate-wide campaign is targeted at 15,881 girls residing in 179 government girls’ residential institutions including Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya, Ashram Shala’s, and Porta Cabins in all the twenty-eight districts under the Project Vijayi. In addition, 2,504 girls from 13 non-residential government schools in two districts Raipur and Dhamtari will get benefitted from various online reading materials, circulars, take care cards and e-magazines. The social media platform is also used for the campaign, WhatsApp, Telegram applications and the government portal cgschool.in to circulate the online material. The campaign intends to negate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic that has severely impacted the education system across India, among these, the lives of young adolescent girls.