Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Education Empowers

Life is not a bed of roses. Haven’t we all heard this?

 I would like to share with you all true life incidences about 4 remarkable women whom I know & how they sailed through their respective experiences that has had an impact on me.

Rama, (names changed) a friend of mine right from childhood thru college was a very smart and intelligent girl. We both graduated together and before even I could think of what to do, I was packed off into a system called marriage. Where as she continued her studies further after graduation and became a teacher in one of the reputed schools in Bangalore. After 2 years I happened to meet her mother who told me Rama was rejecting all marriage proposals that came by saying that the boy was not smart enough or old fashioned, boring etc. Time passed into months and years.
I bumped into her recently and she told me that in her teaching profession, she was elevated to the position of a Principal and when I asked her whether she was married, she said she was a spinster and she did not have any regrets & today lives life on her own terms.

Now let me move…

Life has unexpected turns and twists for us. And when it happens it is too devastating to say the least. In today’s society with nuclear families, both the male and the female members of a family take equal responsibility at times in need.

 “Singapore Gardens” the name on the granite slab screamed in bold letters. Inside which, were sprawling bungalows with the most breath taking gardens one could think of. As I got down from the car my cousin Swati stands there to greet me. I enter the hall way and saw the grandeur of the house, I say to my self, ‘this can easily pass of as a set for any TV soap!”
A CEO husband, 2 lovely kids, an IT professional herself, she had it all!
One night suddenly, life takes a twist to the worst, as the family sits to watch the television, the husband slums and falls on the floor, before even my cousin could react, he is dead, a brain hemorrhage!  It took a great deal of time for her to come to terms with the reality. But life had to move on, she being an IT professional decided to go back to work one day and has taken life as a challenge to bring up her kids.

My 3rd lady who had an impact on me was my yet another friend.

I shudder to think of entering her work place and wonder how she manages to go in there, day in and day out. Here, am talking about my friend Reema who is a psychiatrist at NIMHANS in Bangalore. For those of you who haven’t heard of NIMHANS, it’s a mental hospital. Having a successful career and everything that goes with it, one day she decides to marry. After just a year, they were divorced. Though it was a difficult time for her she focused more on her career and scaled greater heights in her profession and when I meet her every year, she is a more confident woman.  She had simply put her past behind.

Now, let’s see what these 3 women had in common.

All these young women faced difficult circumstances in their early life.
But the 3 women had something in common.
They had their education to fall back upon.

But the reality in today’s world is, education does not reach everybody in India, especially the lower strata of society and when a calamity befalls them, their lives come to a stand still.

My last story goes like this.

Sheela,  my 25 year old domestic help back in Bangalore. She got married at the age of 18, had 3 children in quick succession. One day due to some financial mess up her husband commits suicide, leaving the now 25 year old with 3 small children with no financial, physical or emotional support. Life comes to a stand still.

I happen to hear this story from her mother when I was vacationing in Bangalore. I thought why not I help her?   I summoned this girl to my house and asked her whether she was ready to work outside to earn some money.
As she was interested to work as a sales girl in a garment store nearby all she needed to learn was basic spoken English.
Was she ready for that? YES, she was.
My 1st step began here.
The very next day, I started to teach her simple English sentences.
She was also taught to smile as the customers came in and also to be polite.
After 1 ½ months of training her in simple spoken English as well as some basic etiquette she got the job which she was aspiring for.

 What I would like to stress here is education is a back bone to fall on when one has to face life’s uncertainties.
This servant girl has reaped a huge harvest for herself by bringing in her daily bread and also butter sometimes to her 3 young children!

Friends, I consider myself lucky because I got an opportunity to help this woman and I appeal to all of you too.  Wherever you all might be, if a need comes to educate some one in which ever small way, go out and do it.
Every year when I go to Bangalore and see her doing better than the previous year, I feel proud of her achievements. 

 I would like to sum it up by saying that all the 4 women in my stories took education to step forward in life.

 I can only end it up by saying these two words, EDUCATION EMPOWERS.


  1. Hi while blog hopping peeped in to your blog and found it very interesting....loved to read the post to.....Education realy empowers...

  2. Thank you very much, keep visiting and drop your comments.