The Behboodi Project

After graduating this year, I will be traveling to my mom’s village Behboodi, located in Northwest Pakistan, to facilitate art workshops and distribute school supplies to young girls attending the Government Behboodi School. As my time in college draws to a close, I can’t help but recognize and reflect on the many privileges I have been given. I think about all the small things that have carried me to this point: affirming words from humans throughout my life, access to free education from K-12 grade, the art and music taught in schools, and the idea that if I put my mind to it, I could do it. Back in my mom’s village, the girls in my community aren’t afforded the same opportunities.

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I had the honor of visiting the school when I was both 16 and 20. It was built with the hope of overcoming some of the obstacles girls in Behboodi face when accessing education and it symbolizes a break from the entrenched and restrictive tradition of girls staying at home.
However, it lacks the adequate resources needed to truly empower and educate them. What sparked me most during my visits was the clear absence of color on the walls and the fact that the girls themselves didn’t understand why they were going to school.  

My uncle said it best when he told me that of all the challenges Pakistani girls face when it comes to education, the most difficult is standing firmly for their rights against a culture that does not support them. As the culture shifts around them, the girls of Behboodi are beginning to engage with the importance, the benefit, and necessity of education. In my workshops, I aim to discuss these issues with them as we cultivate self-expression and belonging through art. We will also hang up the artwork throughout the school and provide students with school supplies before they kick off the new school year.

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At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if you live in America or Pakistan, for those that live under systems and structures purposefully created to marginalize them, it has ALWAYS been the small things that inevitably change our circumstances. It is this intention and my firm belief of striving to provide the world with the right tools to succeed that inspired me to do this. I will be documenting so much of this experience -- learning myself & sharing with you all updates and stories about the girls of my village.I would appreciate if you all can donate to our cause and share this link with your respective communities to help us raise money!  Thank you so much!

Donations ()

  • Ismail Ali 
    • $35 
    • 24 mos
  • Bilal Mirza 
    • $20 
    • 24 mos
  • Ali Arshad  
    • $100 
    • 24 mos
  • Keven Quach 
    • $5 
    • 25 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $50 
    • 25 mos
See all

Organizer

Sumayyah Dīn 
Organizer
Berkeley, CA
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