In Bihar, 75% of girls are married before the age of 18, majority of whom marry by the age of 15. But given a chance, many would choose instead to complete and further their education to forge a successful career. Unfortunately, 60% of girls are illiterate, majority living in the rural areas.
For the girls of Bihar, this lifeline comes in the form of an optometry training programme run by The Akhand Jyoti Eye Hospital. Local village girls are given the opportunity to study optometry at the hospital with a condition that their family agree not to marry them off before the age of 21. This enables the girls to pursue their studies with no obligations other than to their course and to themselves.
We support optometry education for six girls, who work at the hospital as interns and will continue to work at the hospital as optometrists after they complete their courses. They also motivate and mentor other girls like them and develop a big team of optometry girls.