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EDUCATION IS MY ASSET

I believe whatever change we hope to achieve in the world and in our immediate community has to come first with change in the home front.

A lot of girls in my community do not have access to education; those that do have access do not have access to quality education. Most of the barriers to a girl child’s education are mostly centered around, traditional and religious barriers. Most traditions and religions do not see the need for a girl to be educated; girls are usually subjected to menial jobs or trading while their male counter parts head to school.
Economic condition and gender inequality stand as barriers to a girl’s education,often times where there are fewer funds for education boys are usually enrolled in school while their sisters stay at home; in this case the decisions made by family’s can be seen as a barrier to the education of the girl. Very few parents in my community think it is necessary for both girls and boys to have proper education, some are of the believe that all a girl requires is the basic primary and secondary education, and has no business in a higher institution. Those of us who got strong support by our parents to acquire a degree were seen as privileged and lucky girls, no one thought of it as a responsibility for my parent to ensure I get quality education.

Schools lack basic amenities and are sometimes located miles away from home; in classrooms teachers usually concentrate more on the boys than girls.
Girls are usually less encouraged, even as an undergraduate in the university my lecturers paid more attention on the boys than they did to the females, we had no mentorship compared to what the male students enjoyed.
While growing up a lot of girls I was in school with suddenly started dropping out to get married, the issue of early marriage in Africa needs to be addressed squarely in order to promote education and to protect young women.

Improving the lives of girls in my community has to start first with mothers and I am hoping to have an avenue to speak to mothers in my community about how essential education is to a woman, a couple of months back I was listening to a woman lament the ill treatment her daughter was receiving from the family she was given out to. She said the family had promised to send the little girl to school and take care of her while she helped them with chores at home but instead of school, she was subjected to hard work even at odd hours, with a lot of abuse.
Listening to her cry and lament was really painful for me, instead of the usual feeling of empathy, I just couldn’t understand why she was crying and was so bitter, I kept on asking myself this question ‘why give birth to children you cannot carter for and why get angry at someone else for treating your child badly “ when you as the parent has failed at your primary assignment as a parent, I felt sorry for the children seeing that she had another child by her feet and another on her breast it was certain that there was something wrong, it was clearly lack of information and education. Then I realize that If a woman is educated she will make better decisions in life especially as regards to marriage and childbearing.

The challenges I faced as a young woman trying to get an education has made me stronger, the things I have been told I cannot achieve as a girl, are the things I am more passionate at achieving, where my society thought I would fail I have always risen to the challenge, I am relentlessly in search of knowledge and information because I am not just a woman but first a human being and one with a drive to succeed and be and be a positive example to girls in my community.

Knowledge they say is key, a lot of African woman especially in the rural settlements do not have any formal education, and as such do not see the need for a girl child to be educated. They have been told overtime that it is of no use educating a girl, as she will still end up as a wife in a man’s house.
It became very important to me to point out that mothers should understand the importance of education, that way they can in turn encourage their daughters towards getting a sound education. Mothers should always listen to their girls, when mothers play their part the life of girls in my community will greatly improve.
When a girl is educated, her children will be educated, If a girl is educated we are sure of a better society.
With the passing of time women are rising to challenges young girls face in accessing education,and are making sure girls are not marginalized.

This story was written for World Pulse’s Girls Transform the World Digital Action Campaign.

World Pulse believes that women's stories, recommendations, and collective rising leadership can—and will—bring girls greater access to education which will transform their lives, their families, and communities. The Girls Transform Campaign elicits insightful content from young women on the ground, strengthens their confidence as women, and ensures that influencers and powerful institutions hear their stories.
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Comments

Debra K Adams MA's picture

it begins in the home

yes, I do agree with you. I am wondering if women really believe it not useful to educate girls or are they only repeating what as said to them as they grew up? We must learn to ask the question 'why?' in a respectful and caring manner that does not challenge but inquires. Curiosity is a good thing - please keep your questions!

"Be the change you want in the world." Gandhi

Debra K. Adams, MA
See my vizify bio! https://www.vizify.com/debra-k-adams-ma-pdv-cws
Survivors In Service: Self Empowerment Strategies (SiSSeS)
Consultant/Speaker/Author & Owner/Founder

Paulina Lawsin's picture

Great post! Your article

Great post! Your article helps us understand the cultural barriers in your country that affects girls and women from getting an education.

Call me naive but in my more than 50 years of existence, it's my first time to hear that there are schools and mentors that give more importance to boys. It makes me angry. A school should be an institution that will show us a better way. And mentors should be instruments of positive change. Instead, they have become instruments of marginalization. The mindset of the people in the entire educational system has to be transformed.

You are helping to create the much needed change by talking about the current practice and their negative consequences on the lives of girls and women.

Keep on writing.

CMedansky's picture

YES!

I love that you are looking for ways to speak out to mothers in your community! Young women speaking out about the cultural and societal practices and beliefs that mistakenly attach low-value to girls’ education are essential to break the cycle of gender discrimination. The mothers and girls in your community are so fortunate to have your strong voice and vision supporting their future, and so are we here on World Pulse!

jdsilas's picture

Yes Crystlle we will keep

Yes Crystlle we will keep fighting for gender equality.

Make the most out of every opportunity you get in life.

ccontreras's picture

I enjoyed your post!

I really enjoyed your post! It is really sad that parents of socio-economic levels that are below the standard have to choose who gets an education, a male vs a female. It's sad that from very young, the divisions of genders are created and also the rise of the male importance over females. I really appreciate your story because it's very real and it also explains very well why women need to be educated, regardless of their socio-economic upbringing. :-)
Peace and love! x

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