Leadership Training for Girls
Traditionally, the tribes from Ayalagaya don’t see the benefit of educating girls.
Parents have the tendency of not sending girls beyond primary school. They grow up to get married. In Ayalagaya, this is not the case. Until 2011, girls rarely made 50% of the students in Secondary School. Since then, their share has been steadily increasing, varying between 57% and 60% in the last 3 years.
In June 2019 twenty middle school girls, ages 15-18, participated in a 3-day leadership training developed by Karimu volunteers to help them realize and expand their potential. According to their interests, volunteers showed them how to increase their educational opportunities and pursue new careers. The girls were all excited and eager to accomplish bigger dreams. Dreams their mothers and grandmothers most likely could not think of, let alone realize.
The girls explored what it meant to be a strong woman by looking at women they admired, women in their families, and their own strengths or those to which they aspire. Reflecting their communal culture, collaboration was the most commonly mentioned strength. But it was accompanied by many more, e.g. resilience, courage, confidence, responsibility, creativity, and nurturance to mention a few.
They had the opportunity to interview their mothers, grandmothers, and aunts about their childhood dreams and see how many were stifled by the situation or culture. Nevertheless or perhaps because of this, their families wanted more for their girls.
The volunteers explored career options by way of discussing successful Tanzanian women, hearing presentations about the careers and challenges from our own women volunteers and some successful women in the community such as the chief doctor of the Dareda Kati clinic, and discussing men’s vs. women’s work and gender biases. Then they thought about their own career desires and how those career options fit their values, skills, and lifestyle aspirations.
Towards the end of the school year, we heard from the head of the school and several teachers that the girls who had participated were different - more confident, more outspoken, more participatory, and better performing scholastically. As these young women come to adulthood, they will change their country .
Higher number of girls pursuing their dreams
Higher number of girls obtaining diplomas and degrees
Learn more about Karimu Education Program .