Naina Jha writes,
“On International Day of the Girl Child, I conducted a session with the girls of Rainbow Homes in Paṭna. There were 30 girls and 5 teachers and the theme was #GirlsShouldBe.
I asked them what they thought a girl should be and they poured their hearts out. The girls talked about all the boundaries that are forced on them and how they wish to break those boundaries.
- Girl should be strong.
- Girls should be honest with themselves first.
- Girls should be courageous, beautiful, and confident were among other answers.
After jotting down their answers on black board, I asked them what they understood and how they planned to envision all those words and terms they had just spoken about. At the end I explained the meaning of each attribute by quoting examples of the same.
I was quite happy to see that no girl spoke about being housebound, or knowing household chores or cooking as the first response to my question.
At the end of the session, I taught them two lines to boost their confidence…
“आज़ादी आज़ादी… हमें चाहिए आज़ादी
पढ़ने लिखने की आज़ादी, हँसने बोलने की आज़ादी
ज़िन्दगी अपने शर्तों पर जीने की आज़ादी”
“Freedom, freedom… we want freedom
Freedom to read and write, freedom to laugh, talk and express ourselves
Freedom to live life on our terms.”