“Fall seven times, stand up eight.” – Japanese Proverb
This is the story of a young girl who achieved success through sheer determination and grit. Sunitaben Jeevanbhai Vaghela, a 15 year old girl, lived with her family in Gujarat and was appearing for SSC (Secondary Board Examinations) that year. Sunita was a bright child. Hence her parents had lofty expectations of her faring well in the exams and making a mark for herself. However, destiny had something else in store for Sunita. Not only her, but her parents and family members were shattered to know that Sunita had failed in her exams. Heart-broken and thoroughly disillusioned with life, Sunita dropped out of school. Her parents, who too had lost all hopes, became disinterested about her continuing her education. Often, out of sheer distress, they would question her about her failure despite being a smart and hardworking student. They also taunted her saying it would have been better had she not taken up studies at all. Sunita was distraught because not only did she have to deal with the anguish of failing the exam but also had to go through the agony of dealing with her parents’ harsh demeanour towards her.

Gram Swaraj Sangh (GSS), a CRY-supported child education project that works in vands (hamlets) of Kutch to ensure education of the marginalized children, got in touch with Sunita and started motivating her to pursue her education again. They instilled hope in her by slowly convincing her that failing once does not necessarily mean the end of everything. Failure is after all the pillar of success. It is not something that should knock one down forever but something that should motivate a person to face life’s challenges with increased vigour and hope.

GSS convinced her parents about the importance of education in one’s life and how crucial education of the girl child is.
GSS supported Sunita a lot by inculcating confidence in her. They made her capable of dreaming and hoping again. Sunita decided to appear for her exams one more time. She rejoined her studies, struggled, studied hard and gave her best.
Sunita finally passed her examination. She was ecstatic for being able to fulfill what she had dreamt of achieving. She is the first and only girl in her vand who got promoted in her 11th clas. Currently she is continuing her education in Saraswati Vidyalay and intends to pursue a diploma course after that.

Sunita’s success story says a lot. To pursue and achieve something in life, we should be fearless, believe in ourselves and move forward with a positive attitude.

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