GIRL RISING FILM:
The summer months always brings lots of fun and creative volunteers to the Kasiisi Project in Uganda. This year the Kasiisi Project was visited by Rich Lehrer of the Brookwood School in Massachusetts. Mr. Lehrer, Sven Holch and the Brookwood School were kind enough to pay the licensing fee to show GIRL RISING to our students in Uganda. This was the Ugandan permier of the film. Girl Rising, directed by Academy Award nominee Richard Robbins and produced by 10x10, has been showing in US cinemas and, “celebrates the strength of the human spirit and the power of education to change the world”. The film was shown at four Kasiisi Project Schools in Uganda and generated many excellent discussions and positive feedback from teachers and students. The Kasiiis Project plans to join Brookwood School in participating in International Day of the Girl on October 11, 2013.
NEW PROJECT DIRECTOR:
We are delighted to announce that Dr. Emily Otali has been appointed as Kasiisi Project Field Director starting in September of 2014. Emily, who is currently Field Director for the Kibale Chimpanzee Project, has been deeply involved with the Kasiisi Project for many years. She is a member of the Board of Directors of our Ugandan partner the Kibale Forest Schools Program and currently serves as Chair of the Scholarship, Finance and Guesthouse committees. Emily will continue to have a part-time appointment with the Kibale Chimpanzee Project KCP strengthening our relationship with forest research and conservation.
Thanks to Ronan Donovan we have a great new brief introduction to the Kasiisi Project. Please see our linked promotional piece at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zZZLBhItek&feature=youtu.be
In April, 2013, I had the opportunity to visit the Kasiisi Girls Project. It was wonderful to be back in Uganda. I was so impressed by all the progress since my last stay in Uganda 1.5 years ago. The Kasiisi Girls Project is doing great -- the girls are thriving and excelling in academics and sports! I had the opportunity to observe the school nurse (hired by the Kasiisi Girls Project) working with 70+ girls - she was distributing sanitary pads to the girls, speaking to them about 'risks' they might face while on spring break (men in the village who may want sexual relations with them, sanitation concerns etc) and bonding with the girls. I observed the girls ask the nurse some really great questions and they all seemed very comfortable with the nurse and the topics - which was a big change to my observations in 2011! I also had the chance to watch the Girls compete in sporting events like cross country running, track, high jump, soccer and more. The girls performed very well and all the teachers and students seemed very excited by the girl’s soccer team! I also visited with a group of 14+ female secondary scholars supported by the Kasiisi Girls Project. The girls were just finishing exams but were very excited to tell me about dorm life, academics, sports, band, computer classes and more. I loved visiting with the secondary school girls and seeing how much they enjoy boarding school and learning! It was hard to leave the Kasiisi Girls Project and come back to the USA – but I definitely left feeling very excited about all the successful and worthwhile work the Kasiisi Project is doing. Thank you all for your support and encouragement! We could not do it without you!
A special thanks to professional photographer Ronan Donovan (http://www.ronandonovan.com/gallery/the_kasiisi_project) who took some amazing photos of the Kasiisi Project! Thank you for volunteering your time Ronan!
Two or three times a year, the Director/Co-Directors of the Kasiisi Project visit our project in Uganda! I am lucky enough to be visiting the Kasiisi Project in April for 14 days! I am very excited to say hello to our wonderful Ugandan Staff and also have the opportunity to visit with the individual projects and see how everything is going! I will be meeting with the girls from the peer education groups, meeting with the school nurse and spending time with our sanitary pad project leaders. I promise to have lots of photos and stories to share upon my return. We truly appreciate all your support and could not do this important work without you!
Today, I am attaching a great photo of our 'Girl Guides' in Uganda.....don't they look wonderful!?
The Kasiisi Project has a lot to be thankful for -- especially for our Global Giving Supporters. We truly want to thank each and every one of you for your continued support and kindness. The Kasiisi Project is able to succeed in our mission every year because of your generous donations so THANK YOU from the bottom of our hearts!
This year the Kasiisi Project graduated its first set of preschool students! Many of those students were young girls who we hope will continue on through primary school and even to University! The preschool students were taught primarily in English which provides these young girls and boys with a big boost for the government primary school exams which are in English.
The project continues to be busy with our Peer Education, Sanitary Pad Distribution and other fun activities for young girls. We are very pleased with the progress of our girls support program and know that it is supporters like you that allow these young girls to become amazing women!
The Kasiisi Project and the Jane Goodall Institute hosted a Girls Peer Education Workshop in September. The workshop was held at the Makerere University Biological Field Station, located in Kibale National Park in Fort Portal.
The main objectives of the workshop were:
Because of your support, the Peer Education Workshop was extremely successful! There were over 30 girls from 7 primary schools who attended the workshop. 10 head women teachers from the schools also attended the workshop. The Peer Education Workshop focused on providing young girls and teachers with the skills they need to educate other school children about reproductive health, HIV/AIDS and the use of sanitary pads.
Uganda has the highest teen pregnancy rate in sub-saharan Africa with over 30% of Ugandan girls having their first baby by the time they are 18. HIV infection rates are 9 times higher in girls than boys the same age and Uganda has one of the highest maternal death rates in the world, 25% of which are from unsafe abortions. However, studies have shown that each additional year of education for girls reduces the risk of HIV infection by 7% and delays the first pregnancy by a year!
The Kasiisi Project, through your help, is assisting young girls to stay in school by providing peer education workshops, sanitary pads and extracurricular activities for girls!
Thank you for all you do for the Kasiisi Project and for the girls of Uganda!
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