Volunteers We Honour
Where We Are At Today?
COVID-19 has added tremendous strain on our girls, their families and their communities.
More than 90% of our beneficiaries are single parent homes, primarily ran by their mothers solely.
More than 70% of those beneficiaries have one or more siblings, and their mothers are the sole earners within the household.
As a result of COVID-19 and the unsecure nature of many jobs and employment opportunities on the island, more than 70% of all beneficiaries have been directly impacted; i.e. their mother or main providers within the household have either lost their jobs completely or have had to sacrifice more than 50% of their hours of work, and as such have a signficant reduction in resources afforded to the households.
As a result of COVID-19 more than 60% of our beneficiaries have communicated their need for mental health support, as a result of depression, stress, suicidal thoughts and heightened anxiety. The unsure nature of everything happening, along with the inability to be connected to others through in person engagement or physical touch, has created a negative impact on their lives.
As a result of COVID-19 we had more than a 50% increase in the number of reports coming in for physical and sexual violence and abuse being inflicted on our girls, espcially during curfew and lock down periods, and in many cases self harm being one of the main coping mechanisms they have used.
There are so many issues being amplified, over the past year and most recently in the past six months, and we continue to pool our resources together to increase the supply on demand for food, hygiene products and counselling, in the first instance.
Additionally, with the requirement for students to still engage meaningfully within the educational system, although everything is occuring remotely, and in most cases the girls are unable to keep up, for many reasons; i.e. no devises, no internet, no electricity, no safe spaces, no support, we keep pushing to fill those gaps where resources afford us to.
Where We Are Headed Tomorrow?
I Am A Girl continues to be reminded each day, that in order to build up our girls to lead tomorrow, we must start by engaging them in their challenges today, while also encouraging them to be their sisters' keeper.
Tomorrow's mission is coupled with today's challenges, in ensuring that our girls are whole; i.e. a sound state of mind, the ability to learn without barriers, and the nurishment to keep them thriving, among many other elements.
As such, we are currently building out a food and hygiene bank, where girls will have access to for their immediate personal needs.
We also believe that none of our work should be done for them, without them, and as such we are in the process of launching a Peer to Peer COVID-19 Assessment, that ensures we capture the essential and urgent needs of each girl. This guarantees that any solutions developed in collaboration with the girls, takes in to account everything necessary for them to thrive, through their lens.
Post-COVID-19 we have already started building out a Safe Space that will be the home for emergency housing and shelter, recreational development and a leadership academy that aims in our girls pushing the boundaries for their own growth, with our support.
How You Can Help Right Now?
You are the backbone of our work, and without your contributions, we could not do half of what we do. All we ask of you, if you can, is to:
- Share with your friends, family, colleagues and peers about your reasons for contributing to our work, so they also have an opportunity to contribute to the girls' development;
- Check out our website, subscribe to our mailing list, and keep abreast of all the developments occuring, while also having an opportunity to be involved in different ways that your skillset, abilities and passions may allow; and,
- Become a recurring partner, in contributing to the girls' development on a monthly basis.
We appreciate you and look forward to checking back in with you in the next quarter to share further updates, stories and lessons learnt.