Vattanvilai is a tiny hamlet. It is part of Thoothukudi district in Tamilnadu, India. 102 families – 236 males and 240 females - reside. 77 families live in thatched houses. All belong to Palmyra tappers community. It is the most backward community. They involve in palm jaggary making, palm candy making, palm leaf thatched making, palm leaf mat weaving and everything connected with palm leaves. Why? The hamlet is abundant with Palmyra trees. Some 20 years back, illiteracy was pervasive. Despite facing problems like transportation, illiteracy, sanitation, malnutrition, alkaline water, under employment, migration, gender discrimination and child rights violations, children, specifically girls, came out with flying colors. How? Being part of a Children’s Club Being part of a Children Creative Center Being part of a Tuition Center Being supported by an Youth Club Being supported by 11 women Self Help Groups Being supported by a Village Development Committee Recently they celebrated their first anniversary. It was they who organized. Since every mind likes celebrations. It gives more pleasure and memorable moments. It was that day. They invited the public. They flooded the stage with variety of cultural events. Each event exposed their hidden talents. Everyone present enjoyed the show. It was intercepted with an Annual Report. The report decorated their achievements. Some of them are: 1. 100% enrollment of children in primary school 2. No more dropouts 3. Step up in mark scoring 4. Friendly relations with teachers 5. Curbing of child rights violations 6. Safety net for children 7. Active in sports and games 8. Expressing themselves through drawings 9. Celebration of key international days 10. Dancing programs 11. Planning of seedlings/saplings 12. Plastic-free village 13. Inclusiveness 14. Ensuring participation The achievements are numerous. In the process, their participation improved. They got themselves enlightened and empowered. It shows that they are second to none. They have definite goals to achieve. They are joyful. They are extremely happy.
Take action! This post was submitted in response to Girls Transform the World 2013.