The government in Pakistan provides free education for students up to the 10th grade. Although there are no school fees for parents to pay, there are other costs which can discourage or even prevent school attendance altogether. School uniforms, shoes, school bags, books and pens can be unaffordable for some families; sometimes they will be unable to send any of their children to school, and sometimes they will be forced to make a decision about which of their children they can afford to educate.
For girls in particular, safety on the journey to school is a major concern. Secure transport needed at an added cost, or a male member of the family has to leave work to take and pick her up from school. The opportunity cost is high and it can seem more cost effective for girls to stay at home and help with domestic work. These costs are a significant deterrent to families educating their daughters, contributing to a wide gender gap in education.
62% of illiterate adults and out-of-school children in Pakistan are women and girls. Among children who are enrolled in school, there is a ten percent gap between male and female students. As well as neglecting the fundamental right of these girls to access education, there are also severe consequences for the quality of life these children will be able to have as adults. Literate women earn 95% more than illiterate women in Pakistan; for men, the differential is 33%. This means that the vast numbers of girls who do not attend school are extremely likely to continue to live in poverty, and will in turn be unable to educate their daughters, leading to a continuing cycle of exclusion and inequality.
Our goal is to remove this barrier and enable children to realise their right to education. You can be a part of this solution. For just USD 150, a child can go to school for a year. USD 150 allows a family to buy all the necessary school supplies including the transport, uniforms, shoes, and stationary needed for a child to reach and participate in class.
For the same amount as just twelve of your morning lattes, you could send a girl to school for a whole year. You could change her whole life.
To those of you who have already been working with our kids and given them the opportunity to attend school this year, please accept our sincere thanks and appreciation. These kids don’t take it for granted. They know how important this gift is. However, without continued support, they could be told to stay at home at any moment.
If you are interested in helping to change the lives of these girls and their communities, please connect with us. There are several ways for you to contribute:
Connect with us and let us know what part you want to play in bringing opportunity to girls in Pakistan through education, or to find out more about our work.