It’s that time of the year when we are all in the giving mode! Festive season becomes so much more meaningful when we contribute to causes that matter to us.
This Diwali, Breakthrough is launching one of its most ambitious programmes yet – we are reaching out to over 200,000 young girls in some of the most remote districts of Uttar Pradesh to help them find their own voices and to stand on their own feet.
While this sounds like a lot of jargon, here are 5 concrete activities that your donations will enable:
- We will talk to girls AND boys across government schools in UP – Our school programme, Taro-ki-toli, is a platform for boys and girls to come together and discuss issues in an open and frank manner. These modules help build sensitivity in boys and create confidence in girls, resulting in communities that are far more equal in the long-term.
- We will work with girls who have dropped out of schools in Kishori Sanghs – 47% of the girls in UP drop out of school, so we will reach them through groups called Kishori Sanghs, where we will discuss issues like continuing their education and preventing their early marriage. Girls learn the ability to make their own life choices through these support groups.
- We will engage the entire village community and their parents – Girls who have the support of their parents and the larger community, can thrive and attain great heights. We will initiate and sustain dialogue with their parents, the panchayat, local self help groups, teachers and district administrators – anyone who can help us ensure the safety and progress of adolescent girls.
- We will ensure that Government health services cater to the needs of adolescents: We will work with local health services to train them on the needs of adolescent girls. We will also educate girls on sexual and reproductive health, so that the incidence of unwanted pregnancies, HIV and STDs is reduced.
- We will advocate with state and central governments to create more adolescent friendly policies: Adolescents fall into that no-man’s land where neither policies for children, nor those for adults specifically meet their needs. And yet, they comprise over 20% of India’s population. Breakthrough will network with other organisations and dialogue with the government, to bring greater focus to this critical segment.
All of these activities, while crucial, require a large amount of sustained funding. We therefore urge all our supporters to help us make this a Diwali full of promise and hope. Join our campaign, spread the word, contribute – be the strength!