Social Mobilisation for Rights of Adolescent Girls Focusing on Gender Violence, Gender Equity and Education – Ranga Reddy, Vikarabad and Suryapet Districts, Telangana.
MV Foundation undertakes the responsibility for the formation of gender committees in schools, for convening meetings, and also for the fixing of agenda. Making this a part of school with teachers owning up to the task was a challenge. Even such teachers who were identified to get involved avoided this work. They were hesitant to track absentee students and blamed the parents for not sending their children to school. Even children in the gender committees were indifferent to absentee students and felt that it was a waste of time. It was indeed a challenge to make teachers responsible to set up the gender committees and hold regular meetings with children.
Gradually, teachers understood the importance of these gender committees and are now eager to convene the meetings. They write the minutes of the meetings or entrust the task to the children. They have phone numbers of all children in each class along with their Aadhar card numbers. When a child has been absent for a long time and the matter gets discussed in the gender committee, the teachers makes a call to the parents. A firm voice of the teacher is enough to send the girl back to school.
Many teachers have become vocal on gender issues and have even raised it in the mandal level meetings. They have also participated in the district meetings with the District Education Officer (DEO) and have made presentations on gender violence and abuse, impact of social media and texting, and also addiction to drugs.