On Women’s day, I would like to spread the message to parents of how education is equally important for their daughters for education does more than just imparting literacy, it empowers women to take risks and face the world with confidence. Education is not just learning how to be a problem solver, but a blazer of trails, a setter of bars, and a raiser of stakes. It enables women to break that glass ceiling, to find, explore, and pursue their passion. Sow the seeds of education. What you reap will not just be daughters, but challengers, explorers, dreamers, and achievers.

It is education that has played a vital role in my journey – right from being an executive, to the Director of IdeateLabs. It’s the learning and values inherent in me that prompt me every morning to do something new and bring a change in my life as well as to society.  These values and learnings are not only from experience but also from my parents, teachers, and mentors who have always believed in my capabilities. It is important to know that I come from a family background that is supportive of my dreams. It grieves me to see how many of our Indian sisters are denied education and are thought of as liabilities that need to be married off at a certain age.

We need to understand that a proper education will increase career prospects, provide more family income, ensure better health and one that will put women and girls at a lower risk of trafficking and exploitation. Women represent 50% of our population. If this population gets its access to education and good jobs, the progress of our country will have no limit. Women are underrepresented in the Indian parliament as we rank 148th in 193 countries in this matter. Education can help young girls today to be aware of our political state and inspire them to enter politics and work for the cause of female education.

With the improvement of educational opportunities, women can acquire skills that allow them to take on bigger responsibilities with ease and bring about positive changes in society. Education does not only develop your skills. It makes you a better human being, it widens your perspective towards life. It gives you joy and excitement. It improves your personality and transforms you into an insightful, intelligent person the world looks forward to hearing from. It is unfair and inhuman to deny girls of a blessing like education.

It is only through education that our women can learn about their rights and their freedom. Women have suffered several social evils such as sati, child marriage, gender inequality, etc. They were confined to the four walls of their houses. It is time to wake up to a new socially conscious 2018 where women should not only know their rights, but they should also know how to protect them.

Above all, I believe that a comprehensive education is essential where women think beyond collecting degrees and take a job. They need to be driven towards earning more money to be financially independent. We need to break gender roles and enter fields that are considered a man’s domain and the right way to achieve this is through female education.

The writer is Director, IdeateLabs