Supporting girls’ education and ending violence
In the small town of Dukem, almost all girls will be circumcised and 90% will be married before they are 18 years old. Girls are more likely to be removed from school earlier than boys to help with domestic chores or earn a living to support their families. Women’s roles are confined to the domestic arena and many parents do not see the value of sending girls to school.
Also, schools are not always safe. Girls may be raped or abducted and as parents try to keep their children safe, they are likely to keep them out of school. Therefore, many girls do not continue with their education and the primary education enrolment rate is very low. Without an education, girls will live in poverty and more violence.
What Womankind is doing
Womankind is supporting the Integrated Community Education and Development Association (ICEDA) to work in two schools raising awareness amongst students, teachers and parents on harmful traditional practices so that girls can remain in school.
- Providing 1,000 girls with tutorials and information on harmful traditional practices
- Working with community leaders and teachers so that they can support girls to stay in school and report incidence of violence to the police
- Supporting over 1,000 girls to run a community shop so that they can raise money for school uniforms and supplies
- Raising awareness of over 10,000 community members on harmful traditional practices and the value of girls’ education
What we have achieved so far
- After ICEDA’s interventions the number of female students at Dukem Junior School is now higher than that of boys.
- In the past, 7 out of 10 girls used to drop out of Dukem Junior School during the traditional time of year for FGM ceremonies, now just 2 out of 10 do.
“Female students are being retained in school. Last year  6.4% of girls did not return to school, this year this was reduced to 2.3%. Many parents now understand the benefits of keeping girls in school because of the community meetings that we have been holding” - Tola Mengistu, Dukem Junior School Director
ICEDA worked with 14 to 16 year old pupils to establish a Girls’ Club which uses drama to raise awareness at the school and in the community of the challenges girls face. They address traditional issues and other practices at the family and community level that may prevent girls from accessing quality education.
“We would like to teach our society about the problems which we face. People should understand about girls’ rights and they should treat boys and girls equally. At school we openly discuss with our parents if they see this drama, especially around the traditional values which are difficult for our parents to talk about.” - Musina, schoolgirl
Please make a donation today to ensure ICEDA’s vital work can continue and more girls like Musina can fulfil their potential.