Lahan Municipality is a small commercial town in Siraha District, located in Province- 2 in Nepal. At the North of Lahan lies a rural municipality named Sakhuwanankarkatti. It is a place where women are still living behind the curtains, and their voice has still not been heard due to the beliefs and practices of the typical patriarchal society and its mindset. But within this place, I found a family, who broke that stereotype and was able to inspire all with their story.
There was a training where the participants had the opportunity to learn business ideas, prepare business plans, they could also learn various aspects of Entrepreneurship. The training was for the Youth in the Siraha district. On the first day of the training, there were participants who were really enthusiastic and wanted to commence the business. There were more male participants than the Female participants. But out of all those participants, there were two girls, who attended the training with the hope to learn business ideas so that they can commence their own business.
These two girls, named Ambe Kumari Mandal and Ranjita Kumari Mandal, came along with their mother Ms. Uma Mandal who was carrying a little baby on her hand. We were sure, the women who came with the baby was not the participant, but we were curious about her presence. We asked them and to our astonishment, she was the mother of those two trainees who were sisters. And the 4-month-old little baby was the son of Ranjita Mandal, who was there for the training itself. For a place like Lahan, this case was truly an inspiration. It is not just because she brought her daughters along, but she realized the importance of Entrepreneurship training and asked her both daughters to complete it. She was there the whole day supporting and taking care of the little lactating baby when her mother was busy in training. That whole image was something that touched our hearts. It was beyond our imaginations, and we showered our gratitude upon such an inspirational figure, who urged for the change. We were proud of these two girls, who were paving their way towards their dream to become an Entrepreneur.
The mother of these sisters is truly an inspiration. In the second day of the training, Mr.Hari Lal Mandal, their Father also came to see his daughter taking the training. He said he has 7 membered family and he did plumbing work to support them. He mentioned that Money is always a problem in his family, but he has tried hard to fulfill the wish of his family members. I raised him the question – Why are you sending your daughters in the training regarding Entrepreneurship? He had a smile on his face and said- “I believe my daughters will end the poverty in my family, initiating the business. We really want to have a proper economic source and after this training, I believe my daughters can take the lead to initiate a business on their own.”
His statement led me to think seriously about this matter. Coming from a society where women are still living under a shadow, this father is leading for change to empower women in his family. It is said charity begins at home and I happened to remember a quote by Mahatma Gandhi- “If a son is educated, he is only educated. But if a daughter is educated the whole family members are educated.” These daughters has a dream to become an entrepreneur and they will eventually achieve it as they have the support of their family. It was such a wonderful story to witness, and it adds a wonderful value to our Lahan Diaries.
- Saru Pyakurel