Today I will introduce to a girl of the sixth grade of our school: Dolly. She is, with her eleven years, one of the youngest students of our highest class, the sixth grade.
It was not easy to find Dolly’s home. Only with the help of another student of our school, who is her friend, could we find the narrow path to her front door. Her small home is squeezed in between the walls of other houses and there is just that small way left to reach their door. Obviously, when you enter at a time when there is currently no electricity – which happens quite often, especially in winter – the one room downstairs is pitch black. The family uses candles to find their belongings.
That’s how most of their time is spent upstairs, either on the small patio or in the room in which Dolly’s aunt lives. Not everyone can fit in there though: in this small house, there are twelve people: Dolly, her three brothers, mother and father, her mother’s mother, who owns the house, and her mother’s sister with her husband and three children.
From this crowded living situation one can already take a guess that their finances are not too well either. They own the house, yes, but there are a whole lot of other expenses as well. Dolly’s father has learnt to be a carpenter and usually works under a contractor on daily basis, earning about four US-Dollar for one day. Usually, because lately he just doesn’t seem to find work. He is out the whole day, searching for a contractor who needs a carpenter. Their explanation for the lack of work is simple: there are too many carpenters from out of town who work for cheap!
That’s how Dolly had to change schools in this year. Although she was, like her brother, on a cheap school, the family could not anymore afford the school fees, books and everything that goes with it! Now she is on our school where the family doesn’t have to pay even one rupee for her education and even the daily warm lunch.
As usual for those students who shifted from a school where subjects are taught in Hindi to one where kids are taught in English, the beginning of the year was tough for Dolly. She caught up with the subjects though and now follows the classes in English well.
We have the best wishes for her family to improve their financial situation. We hope her father gets work again soon and will be able to support his family. We will however support his daughter’s education, something that might otherwise be stopped due to lack of money.