By Daniel Gin Sian Mung; Edited by Katie Hackett
Since birth, 17-year-old Malavika has suffered from hearing and speaking impairments.
Her father, Naren, has always been protective of her. After Grade 2, he forced her to drop out of school and wouldn't allow her outside the four walls of their home.
Through repeated counselling sessions and home visits by World Vision India's disability volunteers, the family realized that in their desire to protect Malavika, she was losing out on her childhood and her education. They recently allowed her to attend a child journalism workshop.
"This is the first time Malavika has been away from home," says her mom Ranju. "I have been getting positive updates of her participation in the child journalist training through Tutu, the World Vision India disability volunteer."
"Through this whole process, I have learned the art of story-telling even with my limitations," says Malavika, smiling.
After seeing Malavika thrive during the workshop, Naren has agreed to enroll Malavika in school again.
"Malavika is very smart and I realize that I need to give her the freedom to choose what she wants to become," says the dad with a smile. "My dream for her is that she gets a suitable job and is able to take care of her needs."
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