If you educate a boy, you educate an individual,
but if you educate a girl, you educate a family.
~ This is not just a well-known proverb, the essence of this has been applied and proven by a little girl, Muskan from Bhimnagar, Bhopal.
Muskan Ahirwar is a 9-year-old girl who has set up a library outside her house. Unlike other children her age, Muskan does not run outside to play as soon as she returns home. She starts collecting books and mats with her sister to set up a library for all the slum children in her neighborhood. She started the library with 120 of her books. She helps her peers to learn and read them.
The rest of the books have been provided to her by Rajya Shiksha Kendra. Her work gained popularity with a lot of support from media. Now, she has many books stocked in her library, but due to the space crunch, she is unable to utilise them. She feels happy with her success and wants to study further. She aspires to be a doctor and wants other girls of her age to study and shine in their respective fields of interest.
Her passion grew manifolds when a committee of State Education Board visited the slum area.The committee held a quiz, and Muskan was the winner. The committee was overwhelmed to know about Muskan and decided to fund her education.
Speaking to The Logical Indian, Anil Gulati who brought her story to the media said that Muskan is a happy girl and loves to study. She was conferred with “Thought Leader” award by NITI Ayog in New Delhi.
Muskan has helped a lot of girls to learn, read and write. Most of the slum children have already finished reading the books that she has in her library.
Madhya Pradesh UNICEF Field Office Chief, Michael Juma commends her on what she has achieved so far. He says that others should follow her footsteps so that more children have access to books and libraries, which will help them in realising their dreams.
Neha, her elder sister, assists her in managing the books. Muskan’s father is a carpenter and mother is a homemaker. They feel proud of their daughter and believe that she will be successful in her future.
The Logical Indian salutes Muskan for her tremendous effort in igniting the spark of education in slum areas and hopes that others take inspiration from it and come forward to work for children and their future.