Creating a Change
Access to education most especially for the girl-child is one of many problems women are facing in the world. Interacting with girls has shown that there are a lot of factors contributing to lack of access to quality education. Apart from my own experience when I was in school that shows that there is gender imbalance when it comes to access to quality education (Male students are more in numerical strength than female students), I also found out that a larger percentage of Muslim girls do not go to school. They themselves donot see it as a right. In my own capacity, I made interactions with girls encouraging them to acquire quality education and intervening when necessary. Being a Muslim also made it easy for me to carry out my research on girl’s access to education in my Muslim community
During my research, I found out that the percentage of Muslim girls in schools is less than the percentage of Muslim girls doing other thing like hawking goods to sustain their families. Most of these girls due to their lack of experience are also subjected to violence and child abuse. I was able to identify some of the challenges and barriers to creating changes based on this discovery and they are: Lack of access to quality information, low level of education, poverty, and misinterpretation of scriptural messages, religious sentiments, communication barrier and men’s domination over women among others.
Some of these challenges can be overcome by organizing sensitization programs (mass enlightening) addressing the importance of education most especially for the girl-child and the use of ICT, working with religious leaders (they have a role to play when it comes to religious sentiments and girl education) and experienced consultant in guidance and counseling. Organizations like BAOBAB for Women’s Human Rights- fighting for the rights of women organizes leadership workshop for young girls and encouraging young girls to join online communities like pulse wire
Pulse wire community provides a platform where one can have access to current information. It is a means of capacity building which helps to have a clear vision. It is a platform where we can share and solve together various intractable problems that might emerge in the cause of creating the desired change. I hope to see a future of gender balance in access to education, job opportunity etc.