Sadhana’s Rescue

When Narun* got married, his expectations were clear: he envisioned a line of male heirs to carry on his legacy. He was elated when his wife gave birth to a son. The arrival of their firstborn was celebrated with pomp and grandeur. Narun poured all his attention and resources into nurturing his baby boy. 

Time passed and Neha*, Narun’s wife, gave birth to a daughter named Sadhana*. Narun’s euphoria turned into disappointment. In his mind, a daughter was not a blessing but a burden.  He only wanted sons, and that was his dream; so, Sadhana quickly became a victim of her father’s gender bias.

While Narun doted on his son, showering him with love, care, and opportunities, Sadhana was the neglected child, hidden in the shadows of her brother’s glory.  Her achievements were met with a barrage of criticism, every dream crushed beneath the weight of his misogynistic beliefs.

Despite her inherent talents, she found herself constantly ridiculed by her father.  Instead of going to school like her brother, Narun told Sadhana that she had to work in the rice fields, where she sank into the mud, and stood hour after hour, every day, in water above her knees.  She frequently became ill because of her working conditions. Yet, Narun told Sadhanna that there was no alternative.  She must work. 

It was Neha, Sadhana’s mother, who gave her hope. She saw her daughter’s worth.  And while she often felt helpless, she stood by her daughter.  Defying her husband, she sought help from compassionate people in their community. That’s when she learned about IGP’s work.  Reaching out to our social workers, Neha pleaded for our team’s intervention in Sadhana’s life. 

Through the concentrated efforts and relentless advocacy of IGP social workers, Sadhana’s story began to change. They confronted Narun with voices of reason, and slowly he began to reassess his mindset.  Guided by our dedicated counselors and the wisdom from leaders in the community, he started to recognize his daughter’s worth. He realized that her gender did not make her “less than;” but rather, her life enriched their family and community.  He even decided that she needed to go to school to achieve her full potential.  She is now freed from the chains of gender bias – empowered by the love and support of her mother and newfound understanding of her father.  

Sadhana’s story is just one of IGP’s many stories of rescue and hope.  Every day, girls in India face struggles much like hers.  IGP is dedicated to reaching these precious girls and giving them opportunities for a bright future. We are the sole international humanitarian organization working with grassroots organizations in India to rescue girls from abuse and neglect because of gender bias, to prevent trafficking, and to save girls’ lives to end female gendercide.    

*Names changed for privacy.

Equality for girls in India
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