A rickshaw driver from Peshawar enables school girls to receive education by providing them with free rides to school.
Shah has provided free pick-and-drop services to school-going girls for almost eight years. He aspires to do so for as long as he can. His sisters were not as lucky as these girls. They were unable to receive basic education due to many challenges of which transportation is one.
When Shah’s sisters were of school-going age, he was much younger and wasn’t able to assist them in choosing education in the face of constraints. “All these stories, including my sisters, motivated me to go out of my way to be an enabler of their education.”
Now that he can provide pick and drop services, he enables other girls to receive education with the help of free transportation.
“The education in the government schools is free, and so is the supply of books and stationery. The only barrier that prevents girls from pursuing education is commutation. Their parents cannot afford a pick and drop for them, and thus, they are discouraged from going to school.”
It is because of Shah’s act of kindness, a 100 + girls make it to school every day. He makes 20 picks and drops shifts every day from 6:30 am to 9 am and then later in the afternoon. He picks up and drops off other passengers to make a living till 10 pm.
Young girls today face biases, doubts, challenges, injustices, and dangers on a daily basis. There are parts of Pakistan, including Peshawar where girl children are married before the age of 18. They suffer physically, and mentally, and are targets of sexual violence at the hands of their husbands. Apart from that, they are subjected to family’s honor, and as a result, 1,000 “honor” killings occur every year.
Access to basic rights, education, access to family planning, nutrition, security, and facilities can improve their lives. We need more people such as Shah to become a force to reckon with.
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International Day Of The Girl is celebrated on October 11th annually. According to the United Nations, progress for adolescent girls has not kept pace with the realities they face today. The pandemic has only reinforced many of these gaps. This year’s theme, “My Voice, Our Equal Future,” International Day Of The Girl, exists to recognize girl rights and the challenges young girls encounter all over the world. The day is meant to promote the empowerment of young …
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