Today is International Girl Child Day. Let us look at some revealing facts. And then we will move on to the Story of Anjali from Dwarka. This real life story of Anjali has a deep relevance to the International Girl Child Day. These facts are quite shocking. In every 5 marriages in the north is a child marriage. Isn’t it stunning? Do you know that 10 million currently married men and 35 million currently married women in the northern belt of India were married as children? There is an exhaustive analysis of the 2011 census data that reveals it. In fact, this includes UP, MP Rajasthan, Delhi, Haryana, J&K, and Punjab. It is not that this issue just limits to these states of India only. It is the same everywhere. A little more or less at other places.
The Census 2011 data also analyses the number of child marriages in these states. And the figures are even quite discouraging. As a matter of fact, girls constitute more than 65% of the total figure in all the states. Almost 22 children go missing in the national capital every day. In fact, 7928 children have gone missing in 2015. Of this, more than 50% were girls most in the age group of 12-18 yrs. These facts are from CRY. CRY’s on ground experience indicates that these girls are mostly now into domestic work and commercial sex trade. But even when the Sun is behind clouds and it is totally dark, there is always a ray of light. That is the ray of hope that comes in the form of the story of Anjali from Dwarka, a huge residential location in Delhi.
This is an inspiring story of Anjali
The story of Anjali is quite different and unique. In most of the cases, it is an NGO chasing children and families to help them understand the importance of education. This, they do in order to get those kids enrolled in schools. As an exception, Anjali in this particular case was relentlessly chasing CRY’s volunteers to help admit her in a school. Anjali is born into an underprivileged family. But despite all kind of hiccups in her family Anjali loves going to school from the very beginning. In fact, her persistence was strong enough to force her daily wage father to enroll her into a nearby school. However, her growing family size was diminishing her chances of continuing her education. And therefore her hope started fading.Image Credits: CRY Volunteer Tapesh Kumar
Anjali was the eldest among her siblings. Being the eldest she was able to understand her responsibility to take care of her five siblings. But managing both school and home became increasingly difficult for her. Finally, succumbing to these pressures she left going to school. It was when her youngest brother was born four years ago. Since both her parents were working hard to make their both ends meet, it was equally stressful for Anjali. The entire responsibility of taking care of her siblings, as well as her house, fell upon this little girl. Despite undergoing through a huge disappointment, Anjali never let that bog her down.One she came to know about our volunteers conducting remedial classes in her area she started attending every remedial class held by CRY volunteers, including other classes held in her area. All while managing her household chores
This is the inspiring story of Anjali
Once she came to know about CRY’s volunteers, Anjali got a ray of hope. These volunteers were conducting remedial classes in her area. She immediately started attending every remedial class held by CRY volunteers. As a matter of fact, including other classes held in her area. At the same time, it was all while managing her domestic responsibilities alongside. Being an active participant in all the sessions and activities, Anjali picked up the basics quickly. This, in turn, became quite inspiring for other kids in her class to do better. In addition, she became a source of inspiration in her locality too. Her enthusiasm and energy were quite encouraging for other kids in her neighborhood. They also started attending these remedial classes. With time, training and dedication Anjali was finally able to get admission in 6th grade at a government school near her area.Image Credits: CRY Volunteer Tapesh Kumar
The story of Anjali from Dwarka is awesome and very inspiring. But I think all girls under similar circumstances are not daring and powerful like energy. They might need a small push. We all can act as a catalyst fo them. If each of us is able to create one Anjali in a year, nothing can stop us to be a top nation. That is the real dedication to the International Girl Child Day. Anjali has set a benchmark not only for her siblings but also for other children in her area to get an education. In fact, the story of Anjali is inspiring enough for a lot more children like her.