By Sajida Ahmad Right To Play Supervisor in Mardan, Pakistan
After only a few days of Right To Play training, an entire family’s life can be changed.
“It is not appropriate for girls to ride a cycle.” That was the answer 10-year-old Wareesha always got from her mother.
Nusrat Begum, a mother of four, would never allow her daughter to play on her brothers’ bicycle. It was not cruelty towards her daughter, but tradition that always determined her response. Girls in Pakistan are often discouraged by their parents from taking part in sport because female participation is considered inappropriate.
A school teacher at the Government Girls High School Takht Bhai, in Mardan – a Right To Play partner school – Nusrat’s outlook was changed in July 2010 when she had the chance to attend Right To Play’s training on Red Ball Child Play.
The inclusion session of this training left a deep impact on Nusrat completely changing her perception of female participation in sport and play activities.
“Now I realize how cruel I had been with my innocent daughter who always wished to enjoy cycling but was always discouraged. I will now immediately get her a cycle so that she can also enjoy her life like her brother. I have realized that when girls and boys have the same feelings then the opportunities should also be provided equally,” says Nusrat.
Much to her daughter’s delight, Nusrat has bought Waresha a new bicycle so that she can enjoy the same joy as her brothers’ feel when riding atop two wheels.