Boys campaigning for girls’ education in Rajasthan

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Girls' education in RajasthanIn an initiative in Rajasthan, boys are campaigning for girls’ education in the State. Educate Girls, a project of NGO, Foundation To Educate Girls Globally, has in its spirit the aspiration to get more girls into schools. Under this, young people are trained to go into villages to find girls that are not in the classroom in a country where more than three million girls are out of school.

Some 60 percent of Educate Girls’ 4,500 volunteers are boys, Founder and Executive Director Safeena Husain told the media. “Having these boys as champions for the girls is absolutely at the core of what we’re trying to achieve,” Husain said in an interview as she was awarded the $1.25 million Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship, the largest prize of its kind.

This initiative becomes very relevant in a backdrop where a recent United Nations report said that India has made great strides in education, reducing the number of children not attending school by more than 90 percent and getting all children into primary schools. But despite success in enrolling girls, many drop out of schools.

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Reports suggest that India is home to one of the largest illiterate populations in the world. In Rajasthan, 44 percent of females are literate, as compared to 76 percent of males. 40 percent of girls leave school before reaching fifth grade.For every 100 rural girls, only one reaches 12th grade. Out of 26 districts with the highest gender gap, 9 are in Rajasthan.

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