Phulbani: Jhulima Mallick, a 22-year-old tribal girl from the remote Bandudi village in Odisha’s Kandhamal district, has brought pride for the state by receiving the prestigious V-AWARD from UN House at New Delhi today on the occasion of International Volunteer Day for her fearless work to end child marriage and promote education in her area.
She is one among 10 awardees from the country and only one from the state.
Jhulima Mallick comes from a poor family background had dropped out from 10th standard education because of the object poverty of her family and had engaged in labour work to support the family income. When the NGO-SWATI and Save the children initiated work and campaign towards putting an end to child marriage in the area she joined as a volunteer and started to organise the girls of her village for prevention of child marriage and better education.
Gradually, she went on to lead the adolescent girl groups to prevent child marriage in the area and successfully stopped 12 child marriage incidents. She also re-enrolled herself in the 10th standard to complete her education and encouraged other girls to acquire higher education and life skill education. Though her village comes under a high malaria zone she with her girls’ group started to aware of the villagers about the prevention measures of Malaria. She was also involved as a leader of the girl group in the MDDMR campaign to make progress towards the Swachh Bharat Abhiyan.
She has placed her experience on Child rights protection and works on Child marriage prevention in different state and district level platforms. Now she is acting as the president of the Block level adolescent girl group.
Jhulima admits that this prestigious award has given her more courage and confidence to work towards putting the end of child marriage in the area. “ It is not the victory for me only, it is the victory of all the girls like me who are showing the courage to prevent the bad practice of the society and fighting for own development,” Jhulima said.