Ever increasing social awareness has made us conscious to the problems faced by those less fortunate than ourselves and highlighted the disparity within our society. In a developing country such as ours, these problems could not be more visible even if you hoisted them up a flagpole. With infrastructure and wealth concentrated urban environments, the effect of globalisation and an open-market economy has yet to enable access to basic infrastructure to those living in rural areas; and regardless of what politicians and the statistics say about the lifting of so many impoverished people out of poverty, the economic gap is ever increasing. Unless you are a hermit in a remote location, nobody lives isolated from their social environment: proactively addressing social issues will ameliorate them far more than pointless nothings such as, “The Government should do something about [insert the relevant issue]”.
One such social malaise concerns the situation of children from underprivileged backgrounds: those who cannot attend school or afford basic healthcare, either due to the unavailability of basic infrastructure or lack of funds, thus resulting in a reduced form of self-awareness. It is important to realise that educating these children does not solely pertain to institutional education but rather an overall development of self-awareness. Underprivileged girls, in particular, are affected most by a lack of this development because of anachronistic social tendencies that discourage them from self-development and intellectual growth. Permitting them to make informed, learned decisions enables independence.
As with all forms of social responsibility, there are both areas and levels of involvement concerning adoption, ranging from funding their primary education expenditures to a complete legal adoption. The capacity and willingness to take a child under your wing requires an emotional bond. Adoption can be distant too for those who wish to test the waters at first; for instance, funding the education of your house cleaner’s or chauffeur’s – or another low-wage, informal sector worker’s – child on top of their monthly salaries is an excellent way to be philanthropic. However, you need to ensure that your funds actually benefit the girl and, consequently, your level of involvement will increase and it should. Their health and general well-being are equally important since these affect both a child’s development and education adversely or favourably. Many charities and NGOs have young orphan girls who would gain immensely from legal adoption by providing them with a caring guardian and access to better education and health facilities. This form of charity is unparalleled: seeing a young child growing up, with equal access and opportunities as others around her, into an autonomous and a bright woman is within the best interests of society.
So go on and better society: break down caste and societal barriers, adopt a disadvantaged girl and transform her life by providing her with the same opportunities to grow as you would to your own child.