“Feminist: A person who believes in the social, political and economic equality of the sexes.” –Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, author 

Our adopted village Bhikamkor is a patriarchal society that conforms to harmful gender norms and stereotypes. As a result, gender inequality is at the core of nearly every hardship that women and girls in the village face.

Because of their low social status in Bhikamkor, women and girls suffer disparities in employment, health care and education.  They worry about their safety, marry as children, become mothers as teenagers and resign to a life that revolves around caring for their houses and husbands.  These issues are detrimental for the well-being and quality of life of Bhikamkor women, and help perpetuate a vicious cycle of poverty for their families.

To try to change the patriarchal culture in Bhikamkor, an IPHD intern started the Youth Feminism Project in 2016. The project teaches workshops that advocate feminist ideas — namely, equality of the sexes and respect for women — to male and female students in the village’s secondary school.  The Youth Feminism Project hopes to promote a village society that is safer, healthier and stronger for women, men and children.