We are a non-profit providing girls a path to independence and a way out of poverty.
Every girl should have a voice in making critical decisions about her life. But in India’s patrifocal society, deep-rooted ideologies and outdated traditions create vast gender disparities that reinforce the value of a male child while limiting the value and freedom of a female child. These gender biases, combined with poverty and a marriage-focused mindset, lead to girls becoming voiceless victims who have very little opportunity throughout their lives. While early marriage (before 18 years for girls) is illegal in India, the practice still persists and is one of the primary obstacles to educational access for girls in poverty. At Sikhya, we believe that by expanding educational opportunities and offering mentorship to these girls, we can give them a stronger future, strengthen their capacity to make their own choices, and hopefully offer a way out of the labyrinth of social and economic obstacles they face in their lifetime. We are a small grassroots non-profit established in 2012, motivated by the resilience, determination and strength of the girls who tirelessly challenge the limits placed on them by society everyday. We now serve 11 girls, have 4 mentors, and 5 board members. The Sikhya community also includes countless individuals and organizations that support Sikhya’s efforts by sharing their expertise, money and support.
Empowering girls through education and mentorship
Our mission is to educate and empower girls in Northern India through financial support and guidance. Education has the potential to not only increase available choices for them but it also enhances the capacity to exercise these choices. We aim to reduce financial and cultural barriers to education, and offer mentorship to support the girls’ goal to be more active participants in decisions about their lives. We are also committed to engaging a global audience in dialogues centered on how gender, poverty and education intersect to shape lives of women across the world.
Watch "Bridge Over Destiny"
The documentary “Bridge Over Destiny: Girls, Poverty, and Education in North India” explores the complex status of girls in India living in poverty and brings to light the stories of six girls who are supported by Sikhya.