Overcoming child marriage to achieve independence, Study Hall Educational Foundation, India
Zubaida was 14 years old when her mother approached the principal of Prerna Girls’ School for a loan of Rs 10,000 for Zubaida’s marriage. By marrying off Zubaida to her cousin, the family would receive money in return, and their financial condition would improve.
After realizing the family was in dire financial need, the school principal found jobs for Zubaida and her mother so they could support their family and avoid child marriage. After completing a Bachelor of Art, Zubaida, now 22, works at Digital Study Hall where she manages Mona Foundation scholarships for girls from destitute families in remote areas of Uttar Pradesh. As a result of the scholarships, 400 girls are continuing their education past 8th grade, the last grade offered at free, government-run girls’ schools.
Zubaida was lucky. With Mona support, Prerna Girls’ School gave her an opportunity that transformed her life. Her education led to fulfilling work assisting girls like her who would otherwise not be as lucky.