#1 Scholarship Program: Empowerment Through Education
Together with our on-the-ground Nepali partner, Creating Possibilities, whose field staff themselves were at one time indentured, Her International worked directly with families to curb the selling of young girls into bonded labour. While this practice is no longer legal, families are still not able to provide their children (mainly girls) with educational opportunities due to extreme poverty.
$33 monthly covers the following expenses for one full year: school admission and exam fees, group tutoring, school uniform, house dress, shoes and socks, school bag, school supplies (books, paper, pencils, and pens, etc.), personal hygiene products (toothbrush, tooth paste, soap, sanitary napkins, etc.) and a bicycle (once they reach the requirements, details below).
In October 2013, though our relationship with our Nepali NGO partner, Creating Possibilities, a long-term dream was realized when we built the Unako House community centre. "Unako" means "her" in Nepalese and quickly became the heart of the Dang community - Her International scholarship students bustle through to pick up school supplies, attend tutoring sessions and meet with the program coordinator. Mothers meet together for life skills and microcredit meetings. A business incubator space houses the cottage industry, Unako, named after the building, that employs local women to make scarves.
We also build classrooms where applicable to ensure there’s safe spaces for education to take place.
Students that demonstrate that they are committed to their schoolwork are presented with a bike between grades 7-9. They are now able to manage their time better by decreased travel time and getting their chores done more efficiently, both leaving more time for study.
Bicycles help the girls with their self-esteem and social respect as it is a visible sign that they are going to school. It is also a safer way to travel for a young girl. Through this program, the girls have become confident and vivacious. Becoming mobile has a long term impact for Her's girls and for their families.
Learning to be a leader in one’s own life and in their community is an integral part of our programming. Participants of our leadership course learn entrepreneurship, communication, planning, and healthy emotional skills through hands-on, active learning methods.
#5 MICROCREDIT life skills GROUPS
The purpose of the Life Skills Microcredit Mother's Groups is to ensure the sustainability of the students' continued education through the mothers' monthly support meetings. These meetings teach mothers to become self-reliant on a personal and financial level. These groups impact not only the individual families but the whole village community.
Currently Her International supports over 1,000 mothers in 42 groups in the Dang region of Nepal.