Story In Pictures
Using digital tools to raise awareness among the people is always very useful.
With the help of inspirational movies, videos, audio, and flashes a message can be used to bring change in the lives of common people. Using such tools are not only helpful to grab the attention of the people it has also a long term effect on the minds which on the other hand by just giving simple talks cannot be achieved. Keeping in mind the importance of interactive media, a session was arranged for young and adult women of the village to emphasize the importance of education.
“Buddha Collapsed out of Shame” an inspirational movie based on girls education has very strong message in very unique way which can be related to the lives of village girls.
The story is based in an Afghan village in which girls are neglected for education, when a little girl tries to make best struggle to get enrolled in a primary school. As most of the girls in the village were faced by the same challenges so the story was so perfect they were relating themselves to it.
A laptop and two small speakers were used to give them message about the importance of education. The idea was so liked by the girls and elderly women that they insisted to watch the whole story at once, but due to time limitation movie was shown to them in three parts because the girls had to leave early to reach for cooking of afternoon meal.
Many girls brought mothers to show them movie. The movie was in Persian language similar to local language Pushtu while most of the viewer girls were Afghan refugees living in the neighboring village so language was not a problem.
Many women got inspired and out of 38 women and young girls three wanted to be enrolled in nearby local primary school. But it was not that easy, it was just a wish and in order to fulfill that I needed to convenience their parents, then the local head teacher, and at last arrange some tuition for the girls.
It was a lengthy debate with their aunts and mothers I remember when I was arguing and reasoning with them I was getting the feeling as these girls are my daughters and I’m defending their future because their parents were too reluctant to listen even.
Answering to arguments of their aunts when they told it is the time for the girls to be married and you are talking about their enrollment? a girl of this age should be a mother, the girl was 8 years old.
The same challenge was faced to convince the other two families too, they were even worse, But I was lucky to convince them and the head teacher. I asked for donation to buy them uniform, books and stationary. It was also one of the reason parents were not sending their children to school because they had no money. I was also successful in that as well. I told the girls to come for tuition after school so that I give them practice for writing and reading. Girls were interested and learning fast. They were happy. I liked the Afghan girl she was the most passionate one. She used to do funny speeches to her family members that I will earn a lot of money and I will be an officer when I complete education and I will change your lives.
After a month the Afghan girl stopped appearing with girls. I inquired about her but I was told they didn’t know anything about her because they didn't allow anybody to enter to their home. After few days I learned that she was beaten a lot by her drug addict brother but she still continued. Till they took her books and uniform. In the next month I was totally broken when I have learned that she was sold to a man in Afghanistan and with that money her brother bought himself wife.
Another girl also left school because of the strong opposition now only one girl is left. She is very eager to learn. She visits me regularly to learn and t be supported for books, notebooks and stationary. I do that and I still have high hopes.