Home Schooling Can rescue girls in My Country
We have a saying, “women are half the community”. What does it mean? Is it applicable? The Woman is half of the community because she is the one who gives birth, the one who looks after her house, the one who manages the family, which is the core of every community. A healthy, educated, well established family is the basic rock for any community structure. Unfortunately, this saying is not always applicable in my community. Weather in the city where I live at the moment, or where I grew up ever since the war in 2003. Girls in Iraq, especially in the villages still lack the access to education, and by education I don’t only mean text books, but also facilities of good teachers, good schools, they lack awareness , and so many other educative activities that can make them good mothers, teachers, or leaders in the future.
War and traditions have the biggest share in the story. According to one of the UNICEF attempts to rescue girls in Iraq, a report has released information regarding the obstacles facing girls’ education in Iraq. Families stopped sending their girls to school favoring their safety to education. If I was a mother and I knew someone was out there waiting for kidnap my daughter, and perhaps rape her or kill her for money, I would rather keep her home than risk her life. Other families stopped their daughters from going to school as their traditions say “Girls do not need to continue their schools, as they belong to house “, disregarding the fact that an uneducated mother, raises uneducated children, which will result in an uneducated community!
It is a great challenge to overcome any of the factors, whether war or tradition as they both have deep roots and endless complications. We cannot provide security over a night and we cannot disregard years of old traditions in one night as well. So many girls especially in the rural areas, where low services and security are provided, and where family traditions are so restricted, are not attending their schools, and in most cases they get married at a young age to their cousins who they have only seen at family visits. As a result, the girls’ education remains unfinished, or nonexistent. They get married at a very young age which gives them a huge responsibility to handle at an early age. They get pregnant at an early age, which may risk their lives, and they become nothing but a source of sex and food for the man.
I believe Arab women generally, and more particularly Iraqi ones are smart. Not because I am Iraqi, but I know what my country have been through, yet, Iraqi women were the ones who sacrifice their youth, beauty, and time to raise better children, face the siege that was imposed on the country for thirty years, with great courage and they manage to survive and support their families. Which is why, I have a great faith in the Iraqi girls to establish a better community that reject racism, sectarianism, and terrorism, IF they were given the opportunity. I personally was blessed to have a family that values education and they risked their lives so I can get a degree, yet, so many girls do not have families like mine and they need to be rescued. Home schooling and providing girls some education at home can be a great solution for those girls. An old African proverb, “If you educate a man, you educate an individual, but if you educate a woman, you educate a nation”. I want my nation to be educated and that’s my vision.