Sonia teaching about methods of communication
The first session of the Adolescent Girls Empowerment Initiative (AGEI) began with18 girls between the ages of 12-16 silently eating breakfast around a large table in the main training area of Ayni Wasi’s office. Program staff attempted to break the ice, asking questions, hoping to make the girls feel welcome and more comfortable. New faces from other communities, adults circling the room, and conversations in two different languages is enough to make anyone feel a little intimidated, let alone someone in the difficult adolescent years. Luckily, instructors Sonia and Yajaida were well prepared to welcome the participants and start off the first session with an appropriate topic: Communication.
A four year age range in adolescence can equal a lifetime of experience. Knowing this, SVH staff decided to divide participants into two groups according to age: 12-13 years old, and 14-16 years old. This division of age groups increased participation, especially among the younger girls. Each training session consisted of customized illustrated resources on the day’s topics, activities, and videos, followed by group discussions that were age appropriate. Sonia facilitated the older girls’ group, addressing more advanced sexual and reproductive health topics like Sexually Transmitted Infections and Family Planning, while Yajaida worked with the younger group, tackling Healthy Friendships, Body Image, and Bullying. Sessions were held in the Ayni Wasi office every Saturday for 4 consecutive weeks. With each passing week, enthusiasm, interest and participation grew by leaps and bounds. The final session of the program culminates with a trip to Cusco to visit a university, a graduation ceremony and a sleep-over.
If retention is an indicator of success, then AGEI is a huge hit! SVH is proud to share a 100% retention rate of 18 girls completing all 5 trainings.
SVH looks forward to an exciting trip to Cusco with all of the girls, and a graduation ceremony to follow. Stay tuned!
Fortifying communication with a game of Telephone
A game tests knowledge of family planning methodsAttachments: