They are only living for their family

28 augustus 2013

Voor het KRO-programma Reisadvies Negatief vertrok presentator Sander de Kramer naar Nepal. Samen met de Nepalese studente journalistiek Shweta Ranabhat. Ze bezochten diverse Plan projecten in dit land waarbij de positie van meisjes en vrouwen centraal staat. Shweta, zelf een meisje geboren in Nepal, vertelt hierover.

 

In the 21st century, the world has transformed from the Stone Age to this modern, scientific age. But still, Nepal has its traditional and old beliefs regarding the rights of girls. We have a saying in Nepal: ‘in childhood a female must be subject to her father, in youth to her husband, and when her husband dies to her sons. A women must never be independent’. A girl is often seen as a curse for her parents, as the parents believe that she will go to another house (in her husband house) after marriage at a young age. So the girls are not given education and are not allowed to enjoy all the rights like the boys do.

By law girls have rights too, but they are often not utilized. Among girls there is still a lot of illiteracy, poor health, low self-confidence and that’s why they are poor in decision-making, access to policymaking and human rights, participation and poor in income generation.

 

Although I was born in Nepal as a girl, my parents educated me. I am studying to become a journalist. I can write about the problems girls are facing in my country. I can be the voice for the poor girls. I always wonder why they are treated in such a way. I used to blame our culture, tradition and patriarchal social system for treating women as second-class citizen.

Luckily, two months ago I got chance to see more of this topic. I was asked to join a Dutch camera crew, who was making a tv-show on Plan girl projects in Nepal. I saw many vulnerable situations of the poor girls. Gender discrimination was the most major issues there. Some of them got married at the age of 16 or working in the fields while their brothers were going to school.

 

I got the chance to speak with the girls. When I asked them, what they would do if they got the chance to be educated…they simply smile and said that now it is not possible because they have to look after the husband’s family and do all household work. Even before marriage they were engaged in doing so much work in their maternal house. A girl told me, that when she is having her period, she has to sleep in the cow shed or in corner of the cold floor, because she is considered dirty.

Some girls were not ready to share their problems. There was fear and low self-confidence in there eyes. They are only living for their family; they don’t have freedom of their own. Getting equal rights like boys is like a big dream for them.

I am happy to see that some non-profit organizations are helping these women. In the places I visited, we saw the work of Plan. Through the projects, poor women are encouraged to improve their standard of life. We saw many programs like saving and loan group systems, trainings in farming, agriculture and tailoring and groups for adolescent girls that help them stand up for themselves. In some villages Plan helped the girls to be educated by providing them school books, school dresses and the fee.

 

Sometime I wonder what would be the situation in Nepal if it wasn’t for these organizations helping. I can – as a journalist – give the girls a voice, but I cannot support them financially. These organizations are doing a great job to uplift the poor women status.

Although the situation of girls is vulnerable in Nepal, I am confident that it will improve in the future. If they are educated well, are empowered in many sectors and are given chance to be participated in every decision making, the girls of Nepal can show their full potential, strength and wisdom.

Shweta Ranabhat (22), Kathmandu

Uitzending Reisadvies Negatief: 1 september, 19.25 uur op Nederland 3

oor het KRO-programma Reisadvies Negatief vertrok presentator Sander de Kramer naar Nepal. Samen met de Nepalese studente journalistiek Shweta Ranabhat. Ze bezochten diverse Plan projecten in dit land waarbij de positie van meisjes en vrouwen centraal staat. Shweta, zelf een meisje geboren in Nepal, vertelt hierover.

blog-Shweta

In the 21st century, the world has transformed from the Stone Age to this modern, scientific age. But still, Nepal has its traditional and old beliefs regarding the rights of girls. We have a saying in Nepal: ‘in childhood a female must be subject to her father, in youth to her husband, and when her husband dies to her sons. A women must never be independent’. A girl is often seen as a curse for her parents, as the parents believe that she will go to another house (in her husband house) after marriage at a young age. So the girls are not given education and are not allowed to enjoy all the rights like the boys do.

By law girls have rights too, but they are often not utilized. Among girls there is still a lot of illiteracy, poor health, low self-confidence and that’s why they are poor in decision-making, access to policymaking and human rights, participation and poor in income generation.

DSC_2467

Although I was born in Nepal as a girl, my parents educated me. I am studying to become a journalist. I can write about the problems girls are facing in my country. I can be the voice for the poor girls. I always wonder why they are treated in such a way. I used to blame our culture, tradition and patriarchal social system for treating women as second-class citizen.

Luckily, two months ago I got chance to see more of this topic. I was asked to join a Dutch camera crew, who was making a tv-show on Plan girl projects in Nepal. I saw many vulnerable situations of the poor girls. Gender discrimination was the most major issues there. Some of them got married at the age of 16 or working in the fields while their brothers were going to school.

DSC_0146

I got the chance to speak with the girls. When I asked them, what they would do if they got the chance to be educated…they simply smile and said that now it is not possible because they have to look after the husband’s family and do all household work. Even before marriage they were engaged in doing so much work in their maternal house. A girl told me, that when she is having her period, she has to sleep in the cow shed or in corner of the cold floor, because she is considered dirty.

Some girls were not ready to share their problems. There was fear and low self-confidence in there eyes. They are only living for their family; they don’t have freedom of their own. Getting equal rights like boys is like a big dream for them.

I am happy to see that some non-profit organizations are helping these women. In the places I visited, we saw the work of Plan. Through the projects, poor women are encouraged to improve their standard of life. We saw many programs like saving and loan group systems, trainings in farming, agriculture and tailoring and groups for adolescent girls that help them stand up for themselves. In some villages Plan helped the girls to be educated by providing them school books, school dresses and the fee.

DSC_0529

Sometime I wonder what would be the situation in Nepal if it wasn’t for these organizations helping. I can – as a journalist – give the girls a voice, but I cannot support them financially. These organizations are doing a great job to uplift the poor women status.

Although the situation of girls is vulnerable in Nepal, I am confident that it will improve in the future. If they are educated well, are empowered in many sectors and are given chance to be participated in every decision making, the girls of Nepal can show their full potential, strength and wisdom.

Shweta Ranabhat (22), Kathmandu

Uitzending Reisadvies Negatief: 1 september, 19.25 uur op Nederland 3

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