International Literacy Day: Turning uneducated women into literacy champs

Sixty-year-old Shiv Kanti of Karouni village, on the outskirts of Lucknow, was an illiterate woman till a few years ago. She even did not send her children to school, engaging them in farm work instead, and was against the idea of her granddaughter attending school, which she thought was a waste of time.
By Rajeev Mullick | Hindustan Times, Lucknow, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON SEP 08, 2018 01:12 PM IST

Sixty-year-old Shiv Kanti of Karouni village, on the outskirts of Lucknow, was an illiterate woman till a few years ago. She even did not send her children to school, engaging them in farm work instead, and was against the idea of her granddaughter attending school, which she thought was a waste of time.

But one evening life changed suddenly for her when she visited the chaupal –village women’s daily meeting for casual discussions – and saw that the place was deserted.

A villager told her that the other women were attending a literacy camp at a nearby location. Curiosity won over her and, covering her face, she reached the camp. On peeping inside through an open ‘window’, she was shocked to see her acquaintance, Savitiri, 55 -- who had also been an illiterate like her -- writing on a sheet of paper.

The ‘window’ proved to be the proverbial ‘window of opportunity’.

The next day, Shiv Kanti got herself enrolled in the camp. She was quick to learn the Hindi varnmala (alphabets) and other basics being taught at the camp.

“My parents made a big mistake by not sending me to school. I too never sent my children to school. It was a crime. And it would have been suicidal if we hadn’t sent our granddaughter to school, as well,” said Shiv Kanti, now armed with a better understanding of the importance of education.

Today, she not only supports her son and daughter-in-law in sending her granddaughter to the nearby primary school, but also helps the child in her studies. She has become a literacy champion who helps educate other village women.

“Given her age, nobody thought she could become literate by attending a six-month camp. But recently, she surprised everyone when the main trainer of the literacy camp did not turn up on time. She started taking the class! This is what literacy has done to her confidence level. She is a good performer,” said camp superviser Alpana Dixit while speaking about Shiv Kanti.

A SOCIAL EXPERIMENT

In a social experiment, a team from Global Dream (a voluntary organisation) trained and prepared 22 women volunteers of Karouni village in Sarojini Nagar area as literacy champions.

“A Global Dream Literacy Survey in Lucknow district helped identify people who could not read,” said Sunita Gandhi of Global Dream, a project of Target Plus Education and DEVI (Dignity, Education, Vision, International) Sansthan.

“It is an accelerated literacy programme and one of the most effective tools to propagate literacy in India,” said Gandhi.

The women volunteers, said Gandhi, didn’t have notable names or impressive titles. “But they have accomplished what many would have thought impossible –making nearly all the women in the village literate,” she said.

While Karouni does have a school, many people, especially women, did not attend it. “However, these determined women volunteers have been empowered and supported to set up ‘Dream Labs’ at their homes,” said Gandhi.

Mother of three, 33-year-old Usha Rawat, is another beneficiary of the programme. “I took three months to learn how to read and another three months to write. For a very long time, I only worked in the field with my husband. But after going to the literacy camp, my world has changed. I have also passed its examination. Now, instead of going to the field, I help my children in their studies once they come back from school,” she said.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Close
SP leader has written to various agencies and the PMO for action against the hospital. (Reuters/ Representative Image)
SP leader has written to various agencies and the PMO for action against the hospital. (Reuters/ Representative Image)

Action against Prayagraj hospital sought in alleged medical negligence case

By HT Correspondent, Prayagraj
PUBLISHED ON MAR 08, 2021 04:31 PM IST
  • A three-year-old suffering from acute intestinal obstruction underwent two surgeries at a private hospital before being referred to the government-run children’s hospital. She died a few days later.
Close
Uttar Pradesh governor Anandiben Patel flagged off 100 two-wheelers and 10 SUVs driven by woman cops in October 2020 (Deepak Gupta (HT file photo))
Uttar Pradesh governor Anandiben Patel flagged off 100 two-wheelers and 10 SUVs driven by woman cops in October 2020 (Deepak Gupta (HT file photo))

Women cops to lead from the front!

By Rohit K Singh, Deep Saxena
UPDATED ON MAR 08, 2021 08:26 AM IST
Celebrating the International Women’s Day on March 8, women cops of Lucknow police will be taking charge at some of the major intersections of the city, said Commissioner of Police Dhruv Kant Thakur. Women cops will distribute flowers to the female commuters.
Close
According to the FIR, the incident took place in 1994 when the survivor was 13 years old and lived in the city at a relative’s house.(HT file photo)
According to the FIR, the incident took place in 1994 when the survivor was 13 years old and lived in the city at a relative’s house.(HT file photo)

UP woman files rape case after 27 years

By HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON MAR 07, 2021 12:36 AM IST
  • The survivor’s family members came to know about the assault when she conceived a child, said a relative of the woman.
Close
Earthen lamps lit to celebrate the foundation laying ceremony of the Ram temple in Ayodhya, at Moti Nagar in New Delhi in this file picture from 2020. (Sanchit Khanna/ Hindustan Times)
Earthen lamps lit to celebrate the foundation laying ceremony of the Ram temple in Ayodhya, at Moti Nagar in New Delhi in this file picture from 2020. (Sanchit Khanna/ Hindustan Times)

Over 25,000 million collected for Ram Temple’s construction: VHP

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Shankhyaneel Sarkar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 08:56 PM IST
  • Rai said that door-to-door collection of funds for the Ram Temple construction has also been stopped.
Close
Bada Imambara(UP Tourism)
Bada Imambara(UP Tourism)

Free entry for women at Lucknow's historical monuments on Women's day

ANI
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 08:37 PM IST
  • "On the occasion of International Women's Day on March 8, women will be given free entry to Chhota Imambara, Bada Imambara and Picture Gallery in the city," the notification read.
Close
Samajwadi Party national president Akhilesh Yadav addresses a press conference.(ANI)
Samajwadi Party national president Akhilesh Yadav addresses a press conference.(ANI)

SP to initiate 'cycle yatra' against BJP's 'oppression' of Azam Khan

PTI
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 07:26 PM IST
The yatra will begin from Rampur, the home district of Azam Khan, on March 13 and conclude on March 21 in Lucknow, party spokesman Rajendra Chaudhary said in a statement issued here.
Close
The child rights body has asked the district collector to conduct an inquiry into the case and also recommended strict action against the doctors and staff of the hospital.(iStock/HT Archive)
The child rights body has asked the district collector to conduct an inquiry into the case and also recommended strict action against the doctors and staff of the hospital.(iStock/HT Archive)

3-year-old girl dies due to medical negligence in Prayagraj, UP initiates probe

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Shankhyaneel Sarkar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON MAR 06, 2021 05:59 PM IST
  • The incident came into light after the NCPCR wrote to the collector of Prayagraj after it received reports of the girl’s death after her parents could not deposit the money required for her treatment at United Medicity Hospital in the city.
Close
Police officials have created a list of village watchmen and noted down their mobile numbers.(HT photo)
Police officials have created a list of village watchmen and noted down their mobile numbers.(HT photo)

Village watchmen to help UP cops in peaceful conduct of panchayat polls

By HT Correspondent, Prayagraj
UPDATED ON MAR 05, 2021 09:02 AM IST
  • A meeting of cops and village watchmen was held at the Soraon police station on Wednesday in this regard.
Close
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath speaks during the Budget Session of UP Assembly, in Lucknow. Representative Photo(PTI )
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath speaks during the Budget Session of UP Assembly, in Lucknow. Representative Photo(PTI )

Early end to UP’s budget session leaves opposition miffed

PUBLISHED ON MAR 05, 2021 08:42 AM IST
  • The budget session of UP legislature began on February 18 and was scheduled to end with the passing of the budget on March 10.
Close
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav. (File photo)
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav. (File photo)

Will win UP elections next year, says SP chief Akhilesh Yadav

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Smriti Sinha
UPDATED ON MAR 05, 2021 08:23 AM IST
Predicting his party’s victory on 350 seats in the assembly elections, he said no one trusted the EVMs. At a training camp for party workers in Jhansi, Yadav said that even in the United States, the presidential elections were held through ballot papers and the counting lasted for several days
Close
Jayant Choudhary said BJP leaders were wary of 'upsetting' farmers and their bid to 'placate' them was visible through party posters.(HT Photo)
Jayant Choudhary said BJP leaders were wary of 'upsetting' farmers and their bid to 'placate' them was visible through party posters.(HT Photo)

RLD’s Jayant Chaudhary asks BJP leaders to join farmers’ stir or lose polls

By S Raju | Edited by Abhinav Sahay, Meerut
PUBLISHED ON MAR 05, 2021 08:14 AM IST
  • Jayant called upon farmers to show their unity to the government, which he alleged was trying to “disgrace and defame” the movement against the farm laws.
Close
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath speaks during the Budget Session of UP Assembly, in Lucknow, Wednesday, March 3, 2021. (PTI Photo/Nand Kumar)(PTI03_03_2021_000070A)(PTI)
Lucknow: Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath speaks during the Budget Session of UP Assembly, in Lucknow, Wednesday, March 3, 2021. (PTI Photo/Nand Kumar)(PTI03_03_2021_000070A)(PTI)

Budget passed in UP Assembly; House adjourned sine die

PTI, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 05:24 PM IST
The government presented the last budget of its current tenure last week with an outlay of 5,50,270.78 crore.
Close
Security personnel check for bombs in the premises of the historic Taj Mahal, in Agra, Thursday, March 4, 2021. (PTI Photo )
Security personnel check for bombs in the premises of the historic Taj Mahal, in Agra, Thursday, March 4, 2021. (PTI Photo )

Man detained for Taj Mahal hoax bomb call, may have mental health illness: Cop

By hindustantimes.com | Written by Kanishka Sarkar, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON MAR 04, 2021 06:13 PM IST
After the threat call to 112 emergency response number of the Uttar Pradesh police at around 9am, nearly 1000 tourists were evacuated from the Taj Mahal.
Close
A replica of Ayodhya’s Ram Temple. (HT Archive)
A replica of Ayodhya’s Ram Temple. (HT Archive)

Uttar Pradesh: Trust buys two plots near Ram temple complex in Ayodhya

PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 11:59 AM IST
A survey is also underway of the adjoining properties for the expansion of the temple land. A list of all houses in the area is being prepared to ascertain ownership of the properties
Close
Crackdown on Illicit liquor trade ahead of the festive season and polls in UP. Representative use(Sanjeev Kumar/HT Photo)
Crackdown on Illicit liquor trade ahead of the festive season and polls in UP. Representative use(Sanjeev Kumar/HT Photo)

UP roadside eateries, dhabas on radar in drive against illicit liquor

By HT Correspondent | Edited by Abhinav Sahay, Lucknow
PUBLISHED ON MAR 04, 2021 10:50 AM IST
  • An excise department official said that besides checking suspicious dhabas along the highways, the stock available at excise shops will be verified in the drive against illicit liquor trade.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP