In May, I started a Girls Group at my school for the grade 6 and 7 girls that runs every Tuesday afternoon. After noticing the passive, submissive role that most girls play in and outside the classroom, I approached a couple grade 9 girls to see if they would help me lead a group for the younger girls. They were immediately excited. We decided that the mission for the group is to help build confidence among the girls, promote open discussion of issues young girls face and encourage girls to speak up.
Over the past six months, we have covered topics such as gender inequality, relationships, HIV/AIDS, teenage pregnancy as well as study tips, self-evaluation and the importance of using our voices. We’ve done dramas, art, sang songs and played games. And from the smiles on their faces, I am certain that the girls have enjoyed every minute of it. As have I.
My fear is that the group won’t continue once I leave, as there aren’t any female teachers at the school willing to dedicate one afternoon a week. However, I have been working very closely with the grade 9 leaders to ensure they are prepared and committed to continuing the group next year. Thanks to all the wonderful donations I received before coming, I am able to provide all the materials they will need to run the group next year. Fingers crossed!