We are supporting some of India’s poorest children to move from a life of poverty to a future with opportunity. In India today, millions of children live in desperate need of the very thing we, in the West often take for granted, education. Without this basic need, they are often denied the chance to realise their full potential. Children that come from a widowed family experience even greater hardship. Widows from impoverished backgrounds are amongst the most stigmatised in India today. In order to sustain themselves and their children they must look for whatever work is available. With insufficient wages, they frequently rely on their children to make up the shortfall by forcing them into child labour. Our timely intervention is helping to turn the lives of some of these children by ensuring they escape the child labour trap and are able to continue their education, helping them to improve their life chances.
Sangeetha is17 years of age and lives in Sirugappatti, a small hamlet in the district of Sivagangai, an undeveloped rural area in South India where the majority of villagers are illiterate and hold strong cultural, traditional conservative beliefs. Sangeetha is a beneficiary of our child sponsorship program. She has received our support for the last four years and has just left school to study further for a Diploma in Nursing. Sangeetha is the daughter of Karuppiah, a young widow working as a seasonal agricultural laborer. Their economic condition is extremely dire and four years ago with great reluctance Karuppiah stopped Sangeetha from attending school as she was unable to meet the cost of schooling resume her studies.
From an early age Sangeetha dreamt of becoming a Nurse and have the opportunity to serve the wider community. The continued support from Kamla Foundation has helped to strengthen her resolve and provide the setting for her to achieve her ambition. The Foundation has pledged to support Sangeetha through her college years.
The support from Kamla Foundation has transformed her life. Prior to our intervention she was a vulnerable, exploited child, soon to become a child bride and looking forward to a lifetime of manual labour. Through our network of support, advice and counselling she will qualify as a Nurse and look forward to a life where she can help others. Sangeetha says, “I am fortunate to be chosen and be given this life changing opportunity. In turn I wish to become a role model and in time, be in a position to provide hope and inspiration to others in a similar predicament”.
Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” ~ Nelson Mandela