SHARIFA BEGUM

Mother of three children

The Nand Ghar, steps away from their home, with its friendly ambience has made Sharifa and her husband consider the possibility of learning the alphabet.

Sharifa and her husband Rejeb Shah hail from a family that placed no value on education at all.

None.

Sharifa’s parents, her two other sisters and three brothers are illiterate. They cannot read or write. If that does not jar one’s sentiments, consider that she married into a family of seven siblings, three brothers and four sisters, none of whom have any education whatsoever, did not attend even one day in school.

Rejeb Shah’s father runs a small store selling cigarettes,supari and soda. He also drives a truck whenever and wherever there is a need. It is hard to understand how the need for education bypasses families when all around one sees progress and change and advances in science. Yet the Shah family has chosen not to send any of their children to a government school that does not charge them any money.

The Nand Ghar, steps away from their home, with its friendly ambience has made Sharifa and her husband consider the possibility of learning the alphabet. Kamlesh Vishnoyi, the Anganwadi worker says she is more than willing to sit down with them on a regular basis.

The desire is seen to burn deep in Rejeb Shah’s eyes. Sharifa breathes hope. It is the hope that the Nand Ghars extend to one and all who are willing to learn and who come to realise that learning and education can be ‘learning-friendly’