Vishrantwadi hostel has provided care, accommodation and educational support for girls from disadvantaged and impoverished Dalit families in Pune for more than 30 years. Due to poverty and their parents’ lack of education, girls are often at risk of not attending school or dropping out early.
Sadly, many of the parents do not recognise the value of sending their daughters to school. Also, young girls are often needed to work with their parents to supplement the family income. In the poorest families, adolescent girls will stay at home to look after the home, younger siblings and animals, particularly if their mother is a single parent. This means that many girls miss out on education and become trapped in a cycle of poverty and early marriage. The majority of students stay with the hostel for 5 years to complete their secondary education.
Vishrantwadi hostel wardens work with local schools to provide study support and tuition so that students can achieve their educational potential. Students can boost their confidence by taking part in hostel activities. The hostel has recently started offering swimming lessons every Saturday which the girls particularly love. Parents attend workshops to increase their awareness of the importance of education for young people and the damaging effects of substance misuse and domestic violence.