In India, new professional skills offer Susana a new lease of life


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After dropping out of school prematurely and struggling to raise her son on her own, Susana decided to change her life. Through aesthetic training, provided by an Aide et Action program, she was able to open her own beauty parlour and earn enough money to support her family. Now, Susana plans to help others by giving them the same training she received, demonstrating the power of education to transform lives.


In India, cultural norms often demand that girls drop out of school early to stay at home and fulfil domestic duties, denying them opportunities to develop professional skills outside the home.This was the case with Susana Dorphang, now 20 years old. Coming from a modest family in Meghalaya district, India, she only attended school for a few years.

When she became pregnant with her son at 16, the young woman, already deprived of an education, was denied the opportunity to work outside the home as her primary responsibility lay in staying home to raise her son.. Her lack of qualification also hindered her in finding gainful employment. But, when her son reached the age of four, she decided to start looking for new opportunities and came across Aide et Action’s vocational training center in Umsning.

Attendance, passion and determination
As Susana was already interested in the profession of beautician, she enrolled in training in this field r to acquire all the basic skills. Excited by her newfound passion and opportunity to learn, Susana was very attentive in class and never missed a lesson. She practiced every day, at home, on her friends or relatives. “My teacher was very friendly and patient with me. I have learnt so much during my training” she said.

With all the skills she gained from the training center, she also gained confidence in herself and decided to open her own salon named Susan’s Hair & Beauty Salon in Umsning. “I didn’t think I would be able to stand up on my own two feet especially being a school dropout”, Susana said. . “I am grateful to iLEAD for giving me this opportunity to become successful. I wish all the best to all of my teachers and the program that has made a real difference in my life. “

Susana now earns enough money to support her family and plans to help other young people by giving them, in turn, training to share her knowledge. Due to her passion and strong determination, she was able to create new opportunities for herself and thus improve her future and that of her son and now others that faced similar challenges that she faced.

Susana’s newfound confidence in herself and her inspiring commitment to share her knowledge with others demonstrates the power of education to empower and transform lives. As we celebrate International Women’s Day on 8 March 2021, we wish to celebrate role models like Susana.