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15 year old Sarika Kumari from Bihar was a bright student from the 9th grade. She loved going to school and wanted to continue her education. However, her dreams were crushed when she was forced to drop out of school as her parents wanted to get her married.

CRY America supported project Disha Vihar, learned about the issue. They intervened and sensitized them on the effects of child marriage and its impact on the life of Sarika. They created awareness about the legal implications of child marriage and convinced both the families to call off the marriage.

Thanks to these efforts now Sarika is back to school, studying in 11th standard and is also pursuing Basic computer course!

13 year old Saraswati, hails from a slum in Jamshedpur, Jharkhand. She is a bright and meritorious student and dreams of becoming a teacher after growing up. While still in grade 4, due to her circumstances she was forced to drop out of school.

CRY America supported project Adarsh Seva Sansthan (ASES) during their re-enrollment drive, spoke to Saraswati's parents. They were counseled about the importance of girl education. After an year of consistent efforts and rigorous counseling by the community workers, her parents finally agreed to let her go to school again.

"I will study, because I like it. If someone stops me from studying, I will fight for my right to education" says an elated Saraswati, currently studying in class 6.

Laxmi, Radha, Yashoda and Annaporna are young girls from the village of Jagnuru in Chikkodi taluk. Their village has a school with classes only till Grade 8, forcing girls who want to study further, to travel 8 to 10 kms every day. Lack of access to transportation facilities andneighborhood schools is pushing families to get their daughters married off as young as 14 years. This compounds the problems of child marriage and results in many girls becoming young mothers before the age of 16.

Laxmi and her friends are part of the Children's Collective of Jagnuru, where they attend weekly meetings and discuss their issues and aspirations. Laxmi and her friends resolved to continue their education. CRY America supported project Mahila Abhivrudhi Mattu Samrakshana Samasthe (MASS) worked with the Children's Collective, the community and the school authorities to upgrade the primary school to include classes beyond Grade 8.They have also ensured that their friends who had dropped out of school have now been re-enrolled.

Today, Laxmi and her friends have become the reason for many girls in the project area being saved from child marriage and given an opportunity to complete their education.

14 years old Anjali's parents migrated to Bangalore in hope of a better income and started working as construction workers. Anjali stayed back in the village but had to discontinue her education due to lack of a high school in her village. She started working as a flower plucker to supplement her family income.

After two and a half years of being a child labor, CRY America supported project People's Organization For Rural Development (PORD) learned about Anjali and her family and decided to help them. After days of convincing the family, they got Anjali re-enrolled in a high school and convinced her parents to return to the village. Today Anjali is studying in class 9 and dreams of becoming a teacher in the future.