I once saw a quote that talked what life is about.

“Life is not only about achieving happiness in life but it’s also about adding value to others life.”

I’ve always tried to follow the principle. I believe that by giving back to people whom I deal with in everyday life doesn’t only add values to their life but equally contributes to help me to grow as a better individual. This quote has always motivated me towards my vision of community as a place where everyone is treated equally irrespective of their gender. I also aspire to empower the women of my community and I’m aware of the fact that it won’t happen overnight.

Empowerment initiates with education and but more than that requires transforming the existing conventional mindset towards women empowerment in the society. To initiate the development, it’s required that women themselves are informed and aware about the need of education in their own lives so that it can be passed on to the coming generations of women. A person who atleast can read the newspapers is informed about what news in their community and the world. This information leads to individuals being empowered.

The idea of transforming the existing mindset of people reminds me of a story about this girl Meera which I would like to share with all of you. My mother used to run an evening literacy class on the request of the women who owned a vegetable stall in our community. They wanted her to teach them how to read and write, so that they could at least know the basic letters to keep record of the account book as they had customers who took things on credit and didn’t bother paying it back. Meera joined the evening classes rather late and was far behind the other women who had advanced onto writing short sentences. She worked as a house maid at a doctor’s home which was 4 minutes away from the school. Her employer had agreed to pay her fees and seemed genuinely happy about her joining the class. The other women who had joined earlier finished their course soon and Meera was the only student left. My mum was willing to teach her for the next two months to help her out with her classes until she completed the course. But then the very next day, her employer paid my mum a visit and told her that, she didn’t want Meera continuing her class which was only for an hour. The reason she gave was, “I need her at home to look after my son. He’s break has started and I can’t be at home the whole day. Besides she doesn’t really do the housework carefully as she’s always in a hurry to attend the class.”

My mother was very surprised because the doctor had seemed enthusiastic about the class. “The only reason I let her join the classes was because I didn’t want to lose the maid. Besides she won’t get a good job till she finishes class ten. So, what’s the use of wasting her time in a literacy class? You know how hard it is to find a housemaid these days. Please tell her that you can’t teach her as she’ll be the only student and you won’t be able to give time.” This request was made by a woman who had been heard telling people,” I’ve sent my maid to the literacy class; the poor girl can atleast learn how to read and write so that it can help her later on.”

When women are the ones who hinder the growth of women, then it’s important that we try to change the mentality of people like the doctor who despite being well informed, failed to realize their responsibility towards women who are in need of education. VOF can help me in my vision because by sharing the stories of individuals and the problems they face to the world, I can realize my vision to bring change. It links me with individuals with whom I can discuss and find practical solutions to problems in a strategic way so that they are addressed by intellectuals, general people and authorized institutions.

Take action! This post was submitted in response to Voices of Our Future Application: Your Vision.


It's so sad that women can sometimes be their greatest enemies. On one hand we want equality and change, but on the other hand we still want things the way they were. Have you heard of Madeleine Albright? She said something which I can not say I do not agree with her:

"There's a special place in hell for women who don't help other women."

She may have been a bit harsh, but she does have a point.

I hope your vision can be accomplished. Change is something we all need to see in order to further our cause

Your post got me thinking. What is the true test of a changemaker. A change maker offers selfless service for the benefit of ALL without expecting a thing back in return. Well done girl, be the change maker we want to see in the world!

Hey Asthu,

I totally agree with you on what you have said. Yes its a bitter truth that we so called "educated women" wants to keep bounded slaves in our home so that we can go out to work and support the family financiall. Its not the story of all but still there is a considerable number of bounded slaves in our country. This is a very big issues although its not acknowledge by state, its agent and other so-called human rights organizations because most of the HR defender have bounded slaves in their home although they advocate against slavery and human rights. Thanks for highlighting this issues:

However, there are some points I would like to comments on regarding your vision. If this is a field you are concerned and is aware of, how are you going to contribute it to change the situation. I totally understand that one person cannot change the world but can make a difference for one person and that different might be a change of world for that particular person. Let me again highlight the above case, Since you are talking about your visiona nd sharing the story of Meera how can you contribute to make her finished her course? Or in other word, how can you conceive the wife of the doctor or the owner to let her assistance (helper) to continue the classs which I found little lacking.

I hope my comment will be a fruitful and helpful for you.

With Love and RegardsSunita Basnet

Hey sunni di,

thanks for taking out the time to read through my article and then again giving your critical comments. I totally agree with you, i wasn't able to exactly state what I could have done to help Meera complete her studies.

Now, when I think about , it the only thing I could have done was talk to her and tell her why being literate and mostly empowered was important for her. If she could at least be empowered she wouldn't have to work for an employer who was not understanding. SHe could get another job easily as it is hard to find sincere individuals like her anymore. I know its sounds vague but I'm still learning and the best thing is that i've got people like you to guide me .

thankyou once again sunni di :)

Astha Joshi

Dear Ariee,

I read with interest your essay. I am grateful to you and your Mother for doing what you do. (I am curious if your Mother continued the lessons). Perhaps the doctor was afraid the women would learn too much?

I would like to know more of how would being a Voices correspondent help you achieve your vision?

In peace, Beverly

Dear Beverly,

Unfortunately she couldn't continue the lessons though I wish it had been the other way around. And yes, maybe the doctor was scared that she'd learn too much and also because s he'd be meeting other women like her who could help her get better jobs as reliable people are very hard to find.

And about being a VoF correspondent, I'll be able to gain a platform and meet individuals who can help guide me in my learning process of helping others .

Astha Joshi

Thank you for sharing.

In your vision of helping others, It's great that you help us see that we can be stumbling blocks.

However, we can help facilitate channels towards resolution of situations like your mother and her literacy class are going through.

Do you think using World pulse can help you achieve this?

Best regards,


Lombe Mwambwa "I think a woman has two choices: either she's a feminist or a masochist." Gloria Steinem

Hello Ariee, thank you for sharing!

I really admire your personal matra outlined in this assignment "to contribute to the improvement of other's lives, not just your own," it is these small goals that are going to be the instigation of change worldwide.

Thank you!