Stories

The Peace Found in Literacy

Leher was born into a family whose traditions prohibited girls from going to school, so she grew up illiterate. Eventually, she married a man who worked as a day laborer and was also illiterate, and a son soon followed.
Since she had no understanding of the value of education, and the local school was such a long walk from home, Leher didn’t send her son to school.

With little money and few options for work, Leher’s husband began to brew alcohol in their home and opened it up as a bar of sorts. Seven days a week, Leher’s home was a terrible place to be; men would get drunk late into the night and get into fights.

Before long, her neighbors were angry, her house was a mess, she had stopped practicing personal hygiene, and her husband was an alcoholic. And yet, even though the lifestyle created by this business was destroying her family—and was illegal—the money was too good to stop.

But then she heard about an Adult Literacy Class beginning in her village, and she was intrigued. Leher decided to attend, and for the first time in her life, she learned how to read, write, and do basic arithmetic. Once she gained these skills, she was hooked! Realizing how valuable education was, she started sending her son to school.
Then Leher attended a special training offered through the Literacy Class on health and hygiene, which showed her the importance of bathing regularly and washing her clothes. Equipped with this new knowledge, she not only began practicing personal hygiene, but decided to stop making alcohol at home. For Leher, now that she had seen what life could look like, money at any cost was far less important.

The family is now living in their home peacefully, no longer kept up late at night by the chaos of drunk neighbors. Instead of operating their illegal business, Leher and her husband have found work cultivating crops, and their son attends school regularly, transforming the family’s future!