Dorothy Khan (Nepal)

Dorothy Khan received her MS in Global Affairs from New York University, graduating with a concentration in Human Rights and International Law. She conducted field research on both registered and unregistered Rohingya women in the refugee camps of Bangladesh. During the summer of 2015, she traveled to Iraq to implement a self-designed project, aimed at empowering youth in the Duhok region of Iraq to become local community peace builders. In addition, she previously worked with urban refugees in South Africa, aiding them in navigating through difficult legal issues as they formally applied for refugee status. Her experience over the years in refugee rights, women's empowerment and human rights has imbued her with substantial experience working with disadvantaged populations throughout the world. Dorothy is also a recipient of a MA degree in Public Policy and and BA degree in Political Science from Stony Brook University. After her fellowship, Dorothy wrote: "Working with students in rural Nepal really changed me as a person and my outlook in life. Not only was this fellowship the most challenging experience I have ever had but it was rewarding and powerful, and I would do it again."



“Eyes Full of Dreams and Ambition”

08 Aug

The Girls Empowerment Program or (GEP) was started in Maintada, with a goal of aiding girls to pass the Secondary School Certificate (SCC) exam, a test that allows students to advance into the 11th grade. Most parents in these villages assumed their daughters would never achieve such a feat, since girls education is not seen as a priority. Despite this ingrained assumption, over the last five years, the team of WRRP has been continually supporting and motivating the girls and their parents. For instance, GEP provides stationery items, uniforms, entrance fees for school, and extra tuition for girls, so that they can excel in school. They have also motivated and encouraged the parents to provide sufficient time and support for their daughters at home.

WRRP wanted to show them that with proper guidance and support these girls can equally excel in their education just as boys do. The underlying challenge for them was to change the mindset of the community. Although the total number of girls enrolled in education is increasing, the completion rate remains poor. Early marriage, poverty, and parents’ lack of awareness of the importance of girls’ education are just some of the barriers girls’ face.

With girls from GEP and adolescence group

 

Families too often feel that they cannot afford those simple items to let their daughters continue schooling, when all hands are needed to feed the family. Situations such as these aren’t uncommon in Nepal. In many places, family and cultural issues often prevent girls from continuing their education. Formal education is often seen as a boy’s role, while girls are expected to stay home in order to take care of household chores. Girls are often sent to government schools, while boys are sent to private schools to receive a better education. In the view of the families, a girls value truly develops when they fulfill their role as future wives and mothers, rather than as future citizens and producers.

Many of the girls echoed how this program has helped change their lives. Due to their participation in the program, they are more confident and are also more aware of the social issues that affect their lives personally. As a result, they are inspired to continue on with their education. By providing girls with crucial life skills, targeting them while they are under the age of sixteen and directly supporting their education, WRRP is making a real difference in the trajectory of these girls lives in Nepal. Increased confidence that stems from these empowerment programs helps the girls negotiate key life decisions and transfer the knowledge about the negative consequences of early marriage to both their peers and parents.[content-builder]{“id”:1,”version”:”1.0.4″,”nextId”:”1″,”block”:”root”,”layout”:”12″,”childs”:[{“id”:”2″,”block”:”rte”,”content”:”The Girls Empowerment Program or (GEP) was started in Maintada, with a goal of aiding girls to pass the Secondary School Certificate (SCC) exam, a test that allows students to advance into the 11th<\/sup> grade. Most parents in these villages assumed their daughters would never achieve such a feat, since girls education is not seen as a priority. Despite this ingrained assumption, over the last five years, the team of WRRP has been continually supporting and motivating the girls and their parents. For instance, GEP provides stationery items, uniforms, entrance fees for school, and extra tuition for girls, so that they can excel in school. They have also motivated and encouraged the parents to provide sufficient time and support for their daughters at home.\r\n\r\nWRRP wanted to show them that with proper guidance and support these girls can equally excel in their education just as boys do. The underlying challenge for them was to change the mindset of the community. Although the total number of girls enrolled in education is increasing, the completion rate remains poor. Early marriage, poverty, and parents\u2019 lack of awareness of the importance of girls\u2019 education are just some of the barriers girls\u2019 face.\r\n\r\n\"\" With girls from GEP and adolescence group[\/caption]\r\n\r\n \r\n\r\nFamilies too often feel that they cannot afford those simple items to let their daughters continue schooling, when all hands are needed to feed the family. Situations such as these aren\u2019t uncommon in Nepal. In many places, family and cultural issues often prevent girls from continuing their education. Formal education is often seen as a boy\u2019s role, while girls are expected to stay home in order to take care of household chores. Girls are often sent to government schools, while boys are sent to private schools to receive a better education. In the view of the families, a girls value truly develops when they fulfill their role as future wives and mothers, rather than as future citizens and producers.\r\n\r\nMany of the girls echoed how this program has helped change their lives. Due to their participation in the program, they are more confident and are also more aware of the social issues that affect their lives personally. As a result, they are inspired to continue on with their education. By providing girls with crucial life skills, targeting them while they are under the age of sixteen and directly supporting their education, WRRP is making a real difference in the trajectory of these girls lives in Nepal. Increased confidence that stems from these empowerment programs helps the girls negotiate key life decisions and transfer the knowledge about the negative consequences of early marriage to both their peers and parents.”}]}[/content-builder]

Posted By Dorothy Khan (Nepal)

Posted Aug 8th, 2016