Miss. Abda Begum is a senior teacher in Godden Government Primary School (GGPS), Swat. In the recent past, Swat experienced political unrest under which education for females was banned. Parents did not send their children to school due to the ban and many schools were closed including GGPS.
However, the oppressive ban did not deter Ms. Abda from continuing to run her school and teach children. When ILMPOSSIBLE: TACS program was implemented in the district, Abda Begum set up a Mohalla Committee- making it the first TACS program Mohalla Committee with a female Chairperson. Abda Begum brought together a strong team and was successful in enrolling 130 children back in schools through the help of ILMBASSADORS.
Since her work as a Chairperson Abda has also managed to improve and expand school facilities to accommodate increased enrolments. Previously some classes of GGPS were held in open spaces and in harsh weather the school would shut down disrupting children’s education. Abda Begum applied for the ILMPOSSIBLE:TACS grant for her school and won it. Leveraging local labour and our local partner SRSP’s technical expertise, she built two additional classrooms. She even held an inauguration ceremony which was attended by newly elected Mr Jaffer Shah, and other influential government officials.
Seeing the commitment of the local community the local Education Department built two additional classrooms in the school on the promise that this school would work as a primary school in the morning and a middle school in the evening as there was no middle school in the community. Abda begum continues to teach at her school and head the Mohalla Committee. She has also locally mobilized funds and built toilet facilities in the school and installed a hand pump.