Never ending stories of girls
Amperi, a 11 years old girl, is getting ready to join her girl friends to collect firewood immediately after having morning meal. Washed her face and used a shawl as towel and went to kitchen and get leftover rice which was also less than half of her regular and took some salt and chilly along and packed in the shawl and tighten in her wrest. Again ran inside and came up with big axe and get it inside her wrest and locked by the shawl. Now, is all ready to join her group of friends. She is happy as they are going to chat and sing songs and enjoy in forest while collecting the wood. She did not feel tired even though she just came back from collecting bushes for the domestics and rushing to meet her friends. While she was leaving there was a big smile in her face.
A group of girls of age 8 to 14 was coming down to village with about 30 to 40 kilograms of wood on their back in doko. The load was highly dominating their weight. A 30 kilograms weighted girl carries 30 to 40 kilograms of load everyday, wow! When they got near I recognized that they were Amperi and group, looking tired and hungry. They left at 9 am in the morning and it's already 5pm, exact hours of their school.
The school remained close most of the time, even if it opened there were only two or three teachers and they were also busy chatting in the office room while the students of Early Child Development (ECD) were playing the role of teacher and student turn by turn and rest of the student in the school were hanging around and playing. Most of the students were boys and girls were absent. It's the scenario of the school in Mugu.
Amperi, who was already feeling sleepy, pushed her plate near to her mother asking for plenty of dahl (lentil). But her mother pushed it back to her without serving. She understood that she is not going to get dahl (lentil) so, continue with rice only. Her family (mother, father, brother, sister in law, niece, me and herself ) were having dinner together at 8 pm. Me, her brother and niece were served with curd, dahl (lentil) and rice while her mother, sister in law and she had rice and dahl. Rest of the member got dahl (lentil) added but except her.
The environment of school, careless behavior of teachers and parents, deep rooted patriarchal society and lack of information, empowerment and motivation all are together draging girls like Amperi out of school resulting on early marriage and early child bearing.