Community Update

World Pulse Toolkits Available!

At World Pulse, we recognize the need for ongoing learning—for you and for your community! Our toolkits are all available here.

We are especially excited to share our signature Citizen Journalism and Digital Empowerment Curriculum. Start learning today!

Back to School season just got brighter for girls in India and Cambodia

Lotus Pedals and Blossom Bus
It’s ‘Back to School’ season, and while American children lament the end of a summer filled with leisure and play as they board their local school bus, millions of girls in Asia are forced to watch their hopes and dreams slip away because they have no way to get to school.

In a given academic year, the U.S. will spend $692 for each student that receives transportation to and from school. Unfortunately, this fundamental element of ensuring children’s access to education does not exist in much of the developing world and millions of girls are left behind as they transition to their nation’s equivalent of junior high and high school. Public secondary schools are few and far between in India and Cambodia, and transportation repeatedly proves to be the greatest hurdle to higher levels of education for girls.

· Cambodia in particular is falling behind in the area of girls’ education. Only 23% of rural Cambodian girls attend secondary school with the rate dropping to a mere 6% for the nation’s poorest girls. One of the key barriers to girls’ education in Cambodia is a lack of transportation. Expanding upon a comprehensive scholarship initiative, Lotus Outreach (LO) is funding bicycles and repair kits ($80) to ensure hundreds of girls can get to school each day. “Lotus Pedals” provides heavy-terrain bicycles to hundreds of impoverished and exploited Cambodian girls who would not otherwise be able to traverse the considerable distance to the nearest schoolhouse—often over five miles each way. “It is amazing to think that something most of us consider a recreational device can mean the difference between whether or not a girl in Cambodia can achieve the promise of education,” says Erika Keaveney, LO’s Southern California-based Executive Director. “We know that there are hundreds of girls literally sitting at home right now instead of going to school for want of a simple bike.”
http://www.globalgiving.org/projects/lotuspedals/

· In Mewat, a remote Muslim district in India, only three out of every 100 girls learns to read and write. LO’s Lotus Education as a Right Network (“LEARN”) encountered great hesitation among the conservative villagers to let young girls leave the house on their own to attend one of the few schools within reach. LO found a simple yet effective solution: “The Blossom Bus” and a parent chaperone safely deliver village girls to school each day for $150 per girl, per year. “Over three years, LEARN officers have earned the trust and confidence of Mewat’s families through their hard work, dedication, and tangible results,” says Glenn Fawcett, LO’s Executive Director of Field Operations. “The improvements they have brought to schools were instrumental in convincing these families to take a leap of faith and break with social conventions by sending their adolescent girls to available schools. Already our first three buses are fully booked and the waiting list is growing every day.” http://www.globalgiving.org/pfil/5307/projdoc.pdf

Girls’ education is internationally recognized as one of the most powerful catalysts for human development. Educated girls marry later, space pregnancies, and are much more likely to raise healthy and educated children, thus halting the transmission of poverty through future generations.

About Lotus Outreach: Lotus Outreach is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring the education, health and safety of vulnerable women and children in the developing world. LO’s unique approach to tackling poverty and its tragic consequences involves working with grassroots organizations in its target countries (India and Cambodia). Lotus Outreach has been working for almost two decades to empower local partners by providing critical, on-the-ground support in the areas of funding, program design, performance management, technical support, training, and data collection and analysis, while giving them enough autonomy to ensure the local ownership and cultural relevance of each project.

For more information and photos visit www.lotusoutreach.org

Lotus Outreach International
P.O. Box 620222
San Diego, CA 92162-0222
Tel / Fax: 888.831.9990

Downloads

Magazine »

Read global coverage through women's eyes

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Inside Congo's Growing Sisterhood

Community »

Connect with women on the ground worldwide

Mkandeh's picture

Ebola: Sierra Leoneans feel like prisoners

Campaigns »

Be heard at influential forums

WWW: Women Weave the Web

WWW: Women Weave the Web

Programs »

Help us train women citizen journalists

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

World Pulse Voices of Our Future

Blog »

Read the latest from World Pulse headquarters

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

EMAGAZINE: Bridging Borders

Partners »

Join forces with our wide network of partners

Nobel Women's Initiative

Nobel Women's Initiative