• From MP village to London: Tribal girl Asha Gond to study in Oxford school

    Dream big and never give up!  16-year-old tribal girl Asha Gond lives by this adge. Gond, who hails from Janwaar village in Panna district of Madhya Pradesh, is now flying to UK to study English language in an Oxford school in the next one or two months. She is just now waiting for her passport formalities to be done on time.

    “I am very excited. I don’t know what UK is like but I will definitely make the most of it. I am not at all scared and will give my best,” said an elated Asha to Hindustan Times on Thursday.

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    According to the Hindustan Times report, Asha recently got introduced to the English language, and has become fluent in it in no time. All this with the help of Ulrike Reinhard, who is a German national. Ulrike, who is supporting and encouraging her, has also established a skatepark in Janwaar where she trains school-going tribal children in skating and English language. She was the one who encouraged Asha to make the UK decision.

    “Asha, who has just finished her class 10 from Manohar Kanya High School in Janwaar, did very well in the English course during our summer camp in June last year. So I promised her to take her to UK to learn English. Initially her parents Dharmraj and Kamala Gond were reluctant in allowing her to go abroad and it took me eight months to convince them to let her go. I went to their house many times. I spoke with her mother Kamala while she was working in the fields in the scorching heat. Asha’s family is entirely dependent upon farming. These villagers are very simple and usually marry off their daughters once they attain the age of 18 years. They don’t understand the significance of studying English language and that too abroad,” said Ulrike while talking to Hindustan Times.

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    Ulrike tried hard to persuade Asha’s parents with the help of Lokendra Pratap Singh, MLA of Panna constituency. Even her school teacher Awadh Bihari went to her house to convince her parents. After Singh’s promise of safety to their daughter, her parents gave her a go-ahead to follow her dreams.

    Talking to HT, the Panna MLA quoted that Asha can be ‘an exapmple for her village’. “I thought it would never happen. But Asha never gave up and kept telling her parents that she wanted to go. Finally her parents agreed and I remember Asha had tears in her eyes. So had mine,” said Ulrike.

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    After coming back from UK, Asha hopes that she can advise and encourage other children to read too. “She’d rather will have a job at Janwaar Castle and translate my words into that village’s language,” added Ulrike who is more enthused than anyone as she finally convinced her parents to not to marry her off when she returns.

    We couldn’t more happier. Good luck Asha!

    Feature Image Credit: HT

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