What Did My Sponsored Student Learn in the First Month?
For 2 hours each weeknight your student attends class in her village!
She writes her first letters, words and sentences on her personal chalkboard, and reads them aloud with the class.
She writes her own name--- for the first time!
She learns numbers 1-100.
She learns how to make life changes to get her basic needs met, about the importance of working to earn a living and how learning will better her future.
Students make lifestyle sacrifices to attend class...
Many students make meals in advance and arrange for child care. Some bring a child to school; they are a welcome part of the learning environment.
Why Does the First Month Matter?
Why these classes?
While comparable programs can cost $30 per month and more to educate a student, ours educate one student for $30 for an entire year! Classes are taught by local Indian teachers who receive a small stipend. Rather than build buildings or send westerners to teach, we empower the Indian people to help women and girls in their own communities.
In addition to literacy, these classes teach math and business skills, as well as health and life skills needed to help students thrive. On average, a student’s income doubles as a result of participating in the classes, making her family less dependent on child labor and more likely to put their own daughters in school.
Before the classes begin, an average of 51% encourage child labor; after the classes, only 6% do. The 41% who did not send their daughters (and sons) to school has shrunk to 4% by the end of the year.
Networking Within the Local Community
We offer a student much-needed support from a caring local community that believes in her value as a person and stands by her, to sustain her as she takes life-changing steps toward health and safety for her family.
Experts cite the importance of community support/networking in ensuring women’s rights in India. (See, for example, http://harvardmagazine.com/2015/01/keeping-women-safe) The classes we sponsor are taught by local Indian Christians, and they are often connected with a local church. (According to the India Census, the major forces facing women in India, including gendercide, child marriage and illiteracy, are not prevalent among the Indian Christian community.) This caring network stands with her as an encouragement to a better way of life.
Opportunity for a New Life
A woman’s first letters and numbers represent the first brave step to breaking the cycle of abuse not only for herself, but also for her daughters and her family. Thank you for your compassionate support!
The Sister India Team
Deb, Charlotte, Irene and Dano
[Link to opportunity to support classes/students.]