Women From Vigilance Groups In Pune To Now Take On The Role On Educational Counsellors To Urge Girls To Complete Their Education.
When the lockdown was imposed 5 months ago, we as a nation went on a standstill. While most of us, apart from dealing with the scare of a deadly virus on the run, were worried about the failing economy and depleting savings, women had more pressing matters to worry about. Mainly, their safety and survival. One would’ve thought that with the entire population of a country forced to stay indoors for so long, it would minimise the number of gender based crimes against women considering the streets would be now emptier still. Turns out, we thought wrong. Because, almost as soon as we were retreated back to our homes so did the crime, from streets to within our own houses.
The rate of domestic violence increased multifold in this period of the lockdown with several cases coming to fore almost every other hour. And while a lot of efforts were being made to tackle the situation and find a solution to this underdog of a pandemic we didn’t see coming, there was a particular women’s vigilance group of Pune Zilla Parishad that did their bit to keep a tab on domestic violence. And now, moving on to a new cause, the women’s vigilance groups would now be working towards ensuring girls complete their education up to graduation.
The chief executive officer of Pune ZP, Ayush Prasad quoted on the matter that these women would be now looking at acting as education counsellors for girls in villages to make sure that girls don’t have to compromise on their education during this period of the lockdown.
Women vigilance groups of Pune ZP to don role education counsellors for girls in villages https://t.co/kYIjeZXSAK
— The Pune Daily (@punedaily) August 10, 2020
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When these groups decided to work in tackling the issue of domestic violence, three-member vigilance committees were formed with volunteers from woman gram panchayats, self-help groups, and women and child welfare committees, who then helped in preempting such cases of domestic violence. And now preempting the situation of education for the girl child, Ayush Prasad shared how the fact that more girls have dropped out of schools and colleges has come to notice and needs to be changed.
He said, “We have seen that girls drop out at transition phases, say from secondary to primary levels or after Class X or Class XII. In many cases, girls are married off. In case of girls from economically lower strata, they find themselves compelled to seek employment in various organised or unorganised sectors.” Explaining how the women from these vigilance groups would help in improving the situation, he said, “What we expect these women to do is to counsel families of girls about to drop out. They will identify them and ensure they complete their graduation at least.”
— Instant Connect (@InstantConnect1) August 9, 2020
Apart from this, Ayush Prasad also means to offer girls scholarships as well as providing them with transport allowance as incentives to continue with their education and we believe it is an effort that needs to be appreciated and taken away from. Citing an example of a girl from the village who was about to be married off at the age of 17, he said, “hey reached out to the family of the girl and counselled them against the marriage. They also provided them with names of colleges where she can be enrolled.”
With such initiatives in place, we can sure hope that change is just around the corned for girls, starting with them having an access to primary and secondary education.