When we conduct awareness workshops in schools, colleges and communities, many share their stories with us. For some, it is the first time they are breaking their silence about the harassment they have experienced. While maintaining the confidentiality and their privacy, we want to share their stories with you. The characters are fictitious but their experiences aren’t.
A Schoolgirl’s Ordeal
“I was very happy when my parents agreed to let me go to school even after 5th grade, instead of forcing me to work in the fields like most other parents do where we live. I love going to school, learning new things everyday, and my teachers are so nice. I want to study hard and become a doctor one day.
But lately, after I started 10th grade, going to school has become scary. The boys in my class harass me a lot. Even the senior boys do the same. They follow me when I’m returning home from school, they demand for my mobile number, saying they’ll send me romantic messages.
Their comments make me feel very scared and vulnerable in school. It makes me want to not go to school. It is already so difficult for girls to study, and then this kind of harassment makes it worse for us. Many other girls in my class also face the same problem and nobody listens to our complaints. We are told to keep quiet about such issues.
But till when should we keep shut? Someone has to speak up some day, for the sake of all the schoolgirls who are harassed daily.”
Written by Dhwani Nanavati–
Currently pursuing her undergraduate degree in Economics, Dhwani Nanavati volunteers in the communications department at Safecity. She believes that the best way to advance women’s rights is by raising awareness, and Safecity is the perfect platform for the same. Apart from academics, she enjoys reading, writing, dancing and debating.