Breaking the cycle of poverty through education
|Breaking the cycle of poverty through education
I spend a lot of time in India, not just for my business, but because I absolutely love this country. During one of my trips, upon exiting the metro station at Yamuna River Bank ,something really different caught my eye. While I was being transported by the sea of humans trying to enter and exit the metro, I saw two little girls across the street, bent over on the sidewalk, writing in a notebook, right under the light post. I thought to myself: "well, that is really strange", so I had to go over to check it out. I speak a little Hindi, so I started up a conversation with these two really cute little girls, doing the best I could with the little Hindi I know. They told me they lived in the slum across the street, and since they did not have electricity in their hut, and in the afternoon they have to help their mother, they would do their homework in the evening, on the sidewalk, under the light post. We befriended each other, so I bought them a bag of chips and a soft drink, and they invited me over to their place. I have to admit that as we were walking towards their hut, I felt very uneasy: the extreme poverty, the unhealthy living conditions, the mud everywhere. We reached their hut and they called out "Mummy! Mummy!". This frail little lady comes out from behind the dirty curtain, smiles at me very timidly, and offers me chai. To this day I still can not believe just how many people gathered around their hut to see this "Videshi" (foreigner) in the slum drinking chai.
One year later, I went back to the slum to meet my two friends, Nisha and Nidhi, only to find out they had to drop out of school, because after their father passed away, their mother could not afford their school tuition. I thought : "there has got to be a way that I can help these two girls!" I know for a fact that Government school in India is super cheap.......
So after giving it a lot of thought I came up with the idea of taking the sales of one of our bracelets, and donating the proceeds towards these girls's education. I am so happy to announce that with the proceeds from our recycled sari bracelets we are now taking care of the girls' tuition, their books, their meals, and uniforms.
I would like to state that they never asked me for money, and that the yearly payments are made directly to the school.
It is a drop in the sea, but now that huge sea of poverty has one drop less in it. These wonderful girls have the chance, through education, to end that poverty cycle once and for all.
Thank you, to all of you!