Be the Change You Wish to See
The following is an account written by a teacher from Government Girls Primary School Little Fairies in the district Tando Allahyar (Sindh Province). The narration below was originally written in Urdu and has been translated into English. The account is written from the perspective of the teacher, Kulsoom D/O Syed Baboo Shah:
“'Achieving success is not a difficult task. One has to follow the straight path and success will follow, provided you are conscientious and hardworking. Your successes will redound if you persevere.'
Ms. Kulsoom continues with her account, narrating that, "Government Girls Primary School Little Fairies opened in 1967 in the district of Tando Allahyar in Sindh. Since the school’s beginning, boys and girls have been studying together in this school. This school was widely known as a KG school, and in the early years, the school was an English medium school. In terms of education, the school always had a high standing. However, from the beginning, there was a problem in the school with cleanliness. This was because there was no sweeper for the school. The headmistress and the staff members used to arrange for a sweeper on a private basis. They either paid for their sweeper themselves or used SMC funds to pay for the sweeper’s salary. After 2008, an issue of great concern arose. The sweeper refused to continue working for such a low salary.
Sarwari Sahiba, the mother of some girl students, was also a member of the School Management Committee (SMC). Whenever she came to the school, she found that the premises were not clean. In her heart of hearts, she felt that the students were being deprived of being educated in healthy, clean school surroundings.
One day Sarwari Baji asked Shabana Jawed, the school’s headmistress, why no attention being paid to the school’s cleanliness. The headmistress responded that they (the teaching staff) are in fact trying to clean the school themselves. She further noted that there is no sweeper, and there are no arrangements for a sweeper’s salary. The headmistress stated that because of these aforementioned reasons, the school is not being properly cleaned.
Sarwari Baji decided immediately that she herself would clean the school. She told the headmistress that she would start cleaning the school on a regular basis starting that very same day. The headmistress replied that Sarwari Baji should further think about and reconsider her decision, because she (the headteacher) cannot even pay her (Sarwari Baji) as much as 500 rupees. Sarwari Baji responded that she didn’t even want a single rupee for the job, and that she was only going to do the work from the goodness of her heart. She stated that she will be rewarded in Heaven.
I, Kulsoom D/O Baboo Shah, have been a teacher since 2008. The students (boys and girls), the staff members, and I have been seeing Sarwari Baji cleaning the school since then. Sarwari Baji arrives at the school each morning at 7:30am sharp and starts cleaning the school. The school is clean before the morning assembly each day.
Sarwari Baji’s voluntary work is a salutary lesson not just for me, but for all of us. This is a great lesson that each of us on our own can also contribute to the betterment of society. I salute Sarwari Baji from the bottom of my heart for this outstanding accomplishment. She has created an example for all of us.
Until this day, with great responsibility and dedication, she is completing her duties.
I pray to God that He gives her a healthy and long life and that God gives us the blessings that we realise and carry out our responsibilities for the betterment of education in Pakistan."
Ms. Kulsoom D/O Syed Baboo Shah
GGPS Little Fairies - Tando Allahyar