Girls Education Program

Girls Education Program

About the Program

In impoverished villages where schools are inaccessible and pursuing higher education is not particularly encouraged, gender norms lead to a third of girls marrying off their educational futures in India. This leads to additional workload and early pregnancies, making it impossible to keep up their education and complete their schooling. 

Our Girls’ Education Program promotes gender equality in education and supports girls to complete their schooling. The program has been designed keeping in mind school-going adolescent girls from economically disadvantaged communities, and provides them with much needed life skill sessions, mentorship, free resources , and academic support from grades 6 to 12 to ensure that girls complete secondary education.

Our Approach

Social Mobilizers

In India, several cultural barriers make it difficult for girls to enroll and stay in school. It is seen, , girls who have positive female role models in school are more likely to stay in school. Ensuring that the school timing fits with girls’ domestic workloads and high quality of education is provided in a safe and secure environment, increase in girls enrolment rates in schools.

Building a thriving environment with honest and reliable relationships is the key to our interventions. Our mentors, better known as Social Mobilizers, are local women trained to guide these girls throughout their journey. Each girl is assigned a mentor they can lean on and learn from. These mentors help girls step outside their comfort zones and develop skills to negotiate the present and future challenges in their lives. They create an  empowering environment to help each student thrive and explore educational possibilities, pushing across traditional customs.

Life Skills Education

The key to an empowered woman is to have the confidence and ability to make independent decisions about her future. This comes with Lifeskills training which is central to our goals. Room to Read believes that when girls have life skills, they can more effectively negotiate life decisions, including the decision to continue their formal schooling.

Our Girl’s Education Program builds their agency and equips them to take charge and push social barriers. Designed for facilitating long-term, systemic change, the training helps these girls navigate the world around them.

Community Advocacy

The primary educational problem faced by girls, especially those from rural India, is the inability to remain in school, even if they are enrolled at the beginning of the year. An estimated 45 % of girls’ dropout of school between grades 1 and 5 (The World Bank, 1997b). Girls are often taken out of school due to a number of reasons, ranging from socio-cultural practices to family responsibilities, such as caring for younger siblings, etc.

Room to Read India therefore actively engages with families, schools, communities, government stakeholders at multiple levels to build an empowering learning environment for girls. Community engagement fosters the generous contribution of local resources for the benefits of education. Collaborating with government officials at the local, regional, and national levels to promote girl-friendly learning environments endows such initiatives with a greater likelihood of being successful and sustained over time.

The Theory of Change

The goal is to ensure that girls become empowered by learning essential life skills to help them choose a life for themselves. The theory of change in the Girls Education Program is designed to let girls realize and achieve their full potential.