Summaia: Age Is Just A Number For Hyderabad Woman

A school dropout and a mother of two children resumed her education after a gap of 20 years

Summaia Naaz, a 36-year-old woman, lives in Hyderabad, Telangana. She is a mother of two children and her husband is a cab driver. Summaia had never finished school, but always had the desire to complete her education. She didn’t know that she would get a second chance to complete her school education almost 20 years after she left school.

Summaia had to drop out of school after Grade 9 due to financial challenges at home and got married early. Busy with household and childcare responsibilities, she never thought she would get back to her studies. When her daughter learned about Pratham's Second Chance program at her tailoring class, she encouraged Summaia to join.

The Second Chance program is designed to help women and girls, who couldn't finish school, to complete their Grade 10 exams. Summaia was hesitant to join at first, but she knew that it was her chance to get an education and help her family.

Summaia found going back to studies after a long gap difficult. Her classes were held at a cluster centre in her neighborhood. She would go to the class after finishing her household chores. Her husband and mother helped her take care of her children so that she could focus on her studies. But soon, tragedy struck when her mother passed away while she was preparing for the Grade 10 board exam. It was a challenging phase, but she gathered herself and resumed her preparations.

In 2022, Summaia took her Grade 10 Board exams. She worked hard and scored an impressive 89%. She was so happy that she had finally achieved her dream of getting an education.

Currently, Summaia works at a nutrition centre. She now advises and guides people on leading healthy lives. She is so grateful for the Second Chance program, which gave her the opportunity to get an education and change her life.

Summaia's story is an inspiration to others who have had to put their education on hold. She shows that it is never too late to learn and achieve your dreams. In her own words, Summaia says, “Age is just a number. If we have interest and desire, we can continue our studies and fulfill our dreams."