“If an egg is broken by an outside force, life ends. If broken by an inside force, life begins”

Husnain -a 9-year-old- boy started his journey from a small village in Hazara, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He was son to a father who drove a bus to make the both ends meet. They had less but were grateful and happy till his father got into an accident that resulted in a long term illness and inability to drive again. That was the time when Husnain realized that they have lost something he once called a dream.

Due to his father’s illness and treatment, the family along with their children moved to Islamabad in search of better life, better health facilities, better living conditions, better education and better present and future. But it was not as easy as they hoped. Due to his father’s disability, Husnain was left with no other option but to take on the role and responsibilities of a “responsible bread earner” for the family. The family was left with nothing and Husnain had nothing in his hands except a few eggs that he would hope to sell before they hatch.

In times of struggles and responsibilities, he also dreamt of being part of the shining part of the city- the part that looked so different from the part of the city where he resided. During one of his daily “selling the eggs- bringing home money” routine he came across the team of ARC working in field, going door to door, talking to parents, community elders and children about the possibility of opening a school in their area. He never thought of going to a school and carrying a bag full of books as he already was carrying the heavy burden of financial responsibility for his family. It is only when one of the community workers of ARC had a discussion with him and later with his family, he realized that he does not have to pay for the education at the non-formal school. Now he had some hope! A possibility that he can go to school.

After few days, he walked into that school as a student where he not only met with other children but interacted with teachers who not only explained to him what education can do or what he can achieve from the books that he carries, but also convinced his family that child labor is not a solution to the problem. After first day at school he ran back to his sisters and brothers. His words were loud when he told them that they can read and write and sit behind a desk. He not only continued his education but also brought his other siblings, one brother and two sisters, to school. Now they come together to school. Every day after the school time Husnain sends his sisters back home with a teacher and leaves to sell eggs near Bari Imam to continue earning for the family. He worries about money; he is often found discussing ideas like his plan to wash cars in summers as people would not purchase eggs from him. But then he also is hopeful now; his dream is to become a doctor and with his money, he wants to open free schools in different parts of Pakistan so that no child will have to work like him.

“In my schools, children will be able to get free education. I do not want them to worry about anything. I want them to play and enjoy their childhood”, – Husnain

Educate A Child (EAC) is a global initiative of Education Above All (EAA) Qatar, which aims to significantly reduce the number of children worldwide who are missing out on their right to education. The program is implemented
(2018-20) across Pakistan by the American Refugee Committee (ARC) in collaboration with Government of Pakistan (GoP).