Our whole lives are governed by chance. Where we are born often determines our prospects in life.
Without clean drinking water, people struggle to survive. Without access to education, people have little prospect of earning a steady income. And if people are discriminated against or threatened, they are robbed of the chance to fulfill their potential and contribute to a stable society. The stories of Madina Muhuthage, Sundar Thapa and Clemencia López Cabrera are examples of how so many people are denied basic rights because of where they were born.
We refuse to accept this injustice.
Everyone deserves an equal opportunity to fulfill his or her potential. In our everyday work across the globe, we see people of great courage, talent and perseverance not only improving their individual prospects but also bringing positive change to their communities – if they get the chance to do so.
Equal opportunities change the world. Thank you for standing with us in our campaign for equal opportunities.
Madina Muhuthage’s story in Mozambique «Of all my chores, fetching water is the toughest»
«I live in Hurucune, a small village in the Memba district of Mozambique. I was born here, like my mother, grandmother and great-grandmother before me. When I wake up tomorrow, my day will be exactly the same as theirs were. I will get up at four and wrap my capulana, a traditional cloth, around my hips as a skirt and another one around my head. I will go to my parents and set about the housework. Of all my daily chores, fetching water is the toughest.»
Sundar Thapa’s story in Nepal «There was no way I could carry on going to school»
«Ever since I was small, my family worried about how to make ends meet. The soil in our fields in Dolakha (a district in the Himalayan foothills east of Kathmandu) was so poor that we couldn’t grow enough to feed our family for even half the year. We were so hard up that we had no time to think of school and education. I completed compulsory education, but even then I had to work in other farmers’ fields to buy the things I needed for school. But there was no way I could carry on going to school and I never learned a trade.»
Clemencia López Cabrera’s story in Guatemala «We were told that women are worth less»
«I live in El Rincón, a village in the municipality of San Martín Sacatepéquez, about three hours from Guatemala City. I am the oldest of seven children, including five girls. My parents only let me go to school until sixth grade. They said, “Why spend money on you girls when you’re going to get married anyway?” I had to get up early and do the housework before I could go to school. I didn’t get any school books or anything. We were told that women were worth less and had no say. A woman’s place was in the home, doing the housework and having children – not in public.»