As we reach International Women's Day this 8th March, at ChildHope we are celebrating the many inspirational women that we meet on a daily basis.In the UK, there has been a lot of publicity recently around the women of India. There are many stories of women empowering change in their community, campaigning for equality and raising awareness of the inequality faced in their daily lives. With this year's International Women's Day following the theme of 'Make it Happen' we are inspired by women like Pinky.
In Karnataka State, India, Pinky grew up in a family living in extreme poverty.Her parents had no choice but to leave Pinky in the care of her aunt, as they could not afford to look after her. Pinky was just seven years old when she dropped out of school and was employed as a domestic worker in someone's home. Two concerned, vigilant strangers noticed the hardship and danger of Pinky's living and working conditions, and she was connected to ChildHope partner The Concerned for Working Children (CWC).
The CWC gave Pinky the opportunity to continue her education and live in safety and friendship in their residential centre. Here, Pinky studied hard and continued to progress whilst The Concerned for Working Children tried to find her parents.
With CWC unable to locate Pinky's parents, they supported Pinky to complete a commerce course. She worked hard and excelled in her studies, finally becoming a fully qualified accountant.
When Pinky graduated, she looked for jobs and found that CWC had a position she could apply for. Pinky was the most suitable candidate and got the job. She couldn't believe it!Now, at 22 years old, Pinky is planning to complete a masters.
"I've always wanted to work in accounts. I feel very fulfilled. I do my job with pride."
Pinky is still heavily involved with the residential centre run by the Concerned for Working Children, she goes back regularly and talks about her time at the centre, inspiring others to complete their studies. She talks passionately about her time in the centre, where she was given the chance to be a child and grow up in safety."The Concerned for Working Children has been like a family to me" she said "I could have worked anywhere but working here is like family. I feel very proud to work in an organisation that works with children like me. I never thought I'd get even beyond Class 7 but they kept supporting me to go further".
Many women and children in India are empowering change in their lives and their communities. Through access to education, and safe space to be a child, many children are reaching their potential to initiate change in their own lives as well as their wider community. Thank you.