12 year old Shreya, my granddaughter, living in the US was very excited when she heard about the Barbie dolls theme of Bridge the Dream Gap where girls are encouraged to fulfill their dreams of becoming pilots, space people, engineers etc which is discouraged saying that these are boys aspirations. In India a theme called ‘Beti Padao beti bachao’ meaning save the girl child and educate her, exists. Shreya wrote to senior members of the company that she wanted to help and that she was coming to India where her grandparents help in running an English medium school in a rural place. The school started 12 years ago with just 8 students and now there are 540coming from six villages around. The first two batches who appeared for the board exams passed with good marks. The company advised her to run an essay contest where the students could write on the theme. The response was excellent and 25 girls received barbie dolls at Shreya’s hands. She had helped spread the idea that girls can become anything. That all their dreams can come true .
This story was submitted in response to GirlForce: Unscripted and Unstoppable.