On March 12th 1989, Mowlana Hazar Imam performed the Foundation Ceremony for a new girls' hostel in Hyderabad, Sind. When completed, the hostel will accommodate 50 girls from rural villages of Sind enabling them to gain access to higher secondary and third-level education opportunities available in the city.
"Those in the rural areas must have the same opportunities for education and the resulting self-fulfillment that are available in those in the towns and cities", said Mowlana Hazar Imam during the ground-breaking ceremony. "The talented young people of the countryside and the small towns of Sind have much to give as well as receive to make their contribution to future generations."
"The students of the 1990's, the young women who will study in this hostel, will be the teachers, nurses, doctors and other professionals who will serve the needs of the coming generation and I hope that many of these students will choose to put their skills to use in the rural areas from where they come", said Hazar Imam.
The Aga Khan Education Services in Pakistan operates major schools in Karachi and Hyderabad as well as in rural Sind. In addition, in the Northern Areas and Chitral there are 117 Aga Khan schools. The priority throughout the system is on increasing educational opportunities, especially for girls. Together with the Aga Khan Foundation, the Aga Khan Education Services places particular emphasis on improving the quality of teacher training as well as on the upgrading of school buildings.
Underlining the importance of voluntary service, Mowlana Hazar Imam emphasized that the new hostel, on completion, should be more than a place of shelter. "I hope that this small residential community will make it possible for its young women themselves to tutor young children, help with the programmes of the Aga Khan Health Services and perform other services of importance to the people around them."
Source: Africa Ismaili (July 1989)
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