Saturday, March 3, 2012

The Men in the Village, Girls Education, Humana People to People, Rajasthan, India, November, 2009

Without this man's help our efforts to reopen the schools in ten villages would be limited.

Years ago when Humana People to People India sought to open schools in and around this village, their representatives sat down with the elders of each village. Instead of going around the men, the foundation was humble enough to understand its place and include the men in the conversation. As such the schools were allowed to exist, and to flourish.

Rather than opening ten schools in ten villages, the foundation presented an approach that included clubs for the farmers, environmental programs, micro loan opportunities for women and so forth. The opinions of all were included in this collaboration, and the men were crucial in the establishment of schools for the girls.

So many feel that men are an obstacle at times regarding girls' education for example. The truth is of course much more complex. Rather than initiate a program without input from its candidates, Humana People to People India puts together a schedule that allows for traditional chores to be completed by the girls, taking only three hours per day for their classes.

In this way the foundation improves access to education for girls without upsetting the balance in each village. They understand their place and work within this framework for the sake of the very girls in my photographic portfolio.

For this and so much more I am eternally grateful.

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Halim Ina Photography