By: News Desk
Developed with the motto of Equity, Respect and Equal Opportunity, Wo Kahani brings a condensed story of two school going children with a lead male & female protagonist character. This story books talks about a routine schedule of children going to school and trying their best to break the stereotypes that the mainstream society is trying to inculcate in them indirectly through communication, advising or teaching.
A quick survey by book developing leads shared that there is lack of contextual books portraying characters that are led by women, showing strong women or girls, showing girls seeking education or women with non-stereotypical attributes. This review of books also depicted that there is no use of gender neutral terminologies in books that are read by young children aged 4 to 8 years old and the choice of stories and color portray women and girls as week personalities and men and boys as more stronger, professional and bright people. Also, the books that are purchased from other countries having common non-human characters (like fish, mermaid, bear, cats etc.) still have similar characteristics of female non-human protagonists. These traits included females who forget quickly, noisy, irritating, looking for support always, have no personal decision-making power etc.
The following concept came out in an incubation workshop during the fellowship program of Rise Up together / Rise Up for girls attended by Pakistani young nurse Sarmad Soomar (26 years old) in USA. Sarmad was selected from a larger loop of applicants to complete the following fellowship program and work on community change making through the idea of creating this innovative story book.
The book is free available for dissemination and the team requests the receivers to provide donations (upon their choice) through which the collected amount will be used in supporting children (especially girls) to resume schools who dropped because of COVID-19. The official book launch is expected in November 2020, but the public dissemination is started already around the Pakistan. Children in Karachi, Hyderabad, Lahore, Islamabad, Quetta and in Northern part of Pakistan are enjoying the book and appreciating the story content, messages and the creative designing.