Kusum Shrestha (Name changed) was born into a poor family in rural Banke district, where education for girls was not a priority. Her family's financial situation worsened even more after her father's remarriage. The family was not able to afford to send all the children to school, and Kusum was about to drop out of school. But, her luck changed when she was enrolled in SGT by RHEST when she was in grade 7. She was later enrolled in Amar and completed her high school in 2018.
Kusum had always dreamed of joining the government service, and she studied and appeared for exams conducted by the Public Service Commission, but unfortunately, she didn't pass the interview. However, she didn't let this setback discourage her, and she applied for another position and this time succeeded. In December 2019, She was posted in Rajpur, in the Bardiya District. It was a dream come true for her and as she started her first job, she fondly remembered how RHEST had helped her realize it.
"In spite of my family situation, I worked relentlessly. I will always be grateful for the contribution of RHEST in my life, and I will support the work of the organization," 21-year-old Kusum said.
In a society that adheres to traditional Nepalese norms, parents hesitate to allow their daughters to continue their education and instead start searching for grooms. However, seeing women like Kusum can change their attitude. Kusum hopes that underprivileged girls like her will become lawyers, nurses, or teachers and make a positive impact on their community. She is proud to be a role model for other girls who are facing similar challenges and wants to show them that with hard work and determination, and a little help, they can also achieve their dreams.
Thanks to the support of RHEST, Kusum was able to break the cycle of poverty and become a successful and independent woman. Her story is an inspiration to many and a testament to the positive impact of organizations like RHEST.