Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico

by Yo Quiero Yo Puedo
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Educate and Empower Girls in Mexico
Juli uses a new public handwashing station from us
Juli uses a new public handwashing station from us

Dear GlobalGivers,

Happy new year! We are now breathing the hopeful air of 2021. Why so much hope?

First, you are part of this story and this hope. So many of you gave us a new donation in the last few weeks and for that we are profoundly grateful.

Second, the impact evaluation is in of our work with teen girls to halt the spread of Covid-19 over the last 6 months! As you may remember, at Yo quiero Yo puedo we have been working day in and day out to ensure girls´ and their classmates´ and families´ health and wellbeing as Mexico City has faced a startingly high infection rate as it prioritizes keeping the economy open. We also needed to make sure that if these girls or their families got sick, they knew how to access a hospital and felt comfortable doing so.

What exactly did we do? We virtually trained youth peer educators, installed handwashing stations in highly transited areas of the most marginalized neighborhoods and launched a public awareness campaign in these same neighborhoods. The girls have since been putting their new knowledge and skills to use to change the reality of the pandemic in their communities.

And here are the results! (Drum roll….)
+23% of youth trained increased capacity to prevent communicable diseases
+11% increase in youth knowledge about Covid-19
+7% increase in youth knowledge about the proper use of health services

A 23% greater ability to prevent communicable diseases like Covid-19 is incredibly powerful, and you are to thank for it! Particularly in light of the rising rate of Covid-19 in Mexico over the last month, this is crucial. These youth peer educators are an inspiration to us everyday and we promise to keep you updated!

In gratitude,
Shoshana and the Yo quiero Yo puedo team

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Dear GlobalGivers,

Here for you with an update on Sandra and her family and classmates in Tlalpan borough, Mexico City. There are now 10,348 confirmed Covid-19 cases to date in Tlalpan alone (a borough with a total population of 677,000 residents).

At Yo quiero Yo puedo we have continued to work day in and day out to ensure Sandra´s physical and mental health and wellbeing as her street and the whole city move from shelter in place to the “new normal” (resuming daily activities with masks and frequent hand washing) in the midst of the high infection rate we are still facing in Mexico City. The training workshops we are running with Sandra and her classmates have been both transformative and fun (take a look at the photo above!). Sandra is now trained as a youth peer educator to prevent Covid-19 in her home and her community. And today, when you are in the street in Tlalpan, you see the vast majority of people wearing masks and wearing them correctly!

At the same time, school is not yet back in session. So Sandra is taking classes via public television- and receiving homework assignments from her teacher via Whatsapp (like text message) and turning them in this same may. Sandra being a youth peer educator and continuing with school remotely is critical for her to stay safe, healthy and ultimately return to school when classes resume, be it later this year or in January. Secondary school drop out has increased an additional 8% because of Covid-18, but together we are ensuring that Sandra is not part of that statistic.

We told you we would not lose lope, and we are indeed seeing that we are able to decrease the spread of --and the deaths from-- COVID-19. You give us hope and enable us to continue this work. Thank you!

With gratitude,
Shoshana and the Yo quiero Yo puedo team

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Sandra
Sandra

“Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree” - Martin Luther King Jr.

 

Dear GlobalGiver,

So much has changed since we wrote to you at the start of February and told you about Sandra, in Tlalpan, Mexico City, and how addressing violence and teen pregnancy is key to her staying in school. Today, Sandra and those of her classmates who have internet (about half of them) are connecting remotely to their classes, and doing at-home activities.

Our work with Sandra has also moved online, and taken on the immediate focus of ensuring Sandra´s physical and mental health and wellbeing in the midst of shelter-in place; we are in constant communication via WhatsApp (more common than text messages here) and this month we launch virtual workshop sessions. As an organization, we are learning and adapting-  experiential workshops aren´t the first thing you think of for Zoom, but we have gotten creative with breakout rooms, interactive polls and the participation of influencers on social media, even enabling phone-only connection. 

Sandra´s borough of Tlalpan is in the top 3 for Covid-19 contagion in the whole country. Not only is it important that Sandra stays enrolled in school, but as a youth peer educator we need to make sure that she has the knowledge and tools to prevent Covid-19 in her home and her community. 

The families here, many living in deep poverty, are finding it difficult to stay safe from the virus, and because of this, according to official records there are already more than 1,800 cases and over 100 deaths in her borough alone. Infections in Mexico have still not plateaued, and many still don´t wear masks or wash their hands regularly. As you can see, we have our work cut out for us. 

Ithere is one thing that we are sure of, it is that we will not lose hope. We are certain that with the daily efforts of the entire Yo quiero Yo puedo team, hand in hand with Sandra, her classmates and their families, we will be able to decrease the spread of --and the deaths from-- COVID-19.

People like you give us hope. Your support in the last two months, and whatever you can give this month, means we are able to build local awareness quickly in Tlalpan, and are getting more people to wear face masks and wash their hands.

Thank you for everything you do! With the help of people like you, there is hope that we will soon be able to hug those we most love.

With gratitude, 

Shoshana and the Yo quiero Yo puedo team

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Loud and clear: "lets talk openly about safe sex"
Loud and clear: "lets talk openly about safe sex"

Dear GlobalGivers,

After three years following the 4th, 5th and 6th grade girls in rural Acaxochitlán, Hidalgo, we want to take you to Mexico City, and introduce you to high school girls. In Sandra´s school- in the Tlalpan neighborhood at the south end of Mexico City – more than half of her peers didn´t use any form of contraception the first time they had sex, and a quarter of them never use any form of contraception. Which explains why many of her friends have gotten pregnant and had to drop out of school before finishing. How their bodies work and how to be safe isn´t something they talk about often. 

Sandra and her friends also frequently find themselves face to face with violence. School, for example, is one of the spaces where violence is not only suffered but also reproduced. A national survey of public schools shows that violence is a common phenomenon within the educational spaces and is seen as normal. Some days, Sandra prefers to stay home than to face bullying and get jeered at by some of her classmates. They don´t do it out of meanness, it is just how they have learned to interact with girls.

But change is coming. Sandra came forward when we gave a talk at her school, and volunteered to be a youth peer educator. Over the coming year, we will be training her and 119 of her classmates through a 40 hour workshop, so that they can first understand these dynamics in their school and community, and then become agents of change. We will also be involving Sandra’s parents and teachers, because we know that change comes most sustainably when it comes to an entire community. 

Thank you for helping Sandra become an agent of change. We can´t wait to keep you updated over the coming year.

With grattitude,

Shoshana and Yo quiero Yo puedo

Calling all youth!
Calling all youth!
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Dear GlobalGivers,

Wow, three years have flown by since we started working with the students of Acaxochitlán (pronounced Ah-kah-tzo-cheet-lhan), Hidalgo!

In August, we told you about how much has changed since we started this program and the men wanted us to leave for talking about sexual and reproductive health (even though teen pregnancy is one of the biggest reasons why girls drop out of middle school). From participatory sessions with parents to workshops with teachers, to in-classroom activities with girls and boys, we have been hard at work with the community to reduce the school drop-out of indigenous girls by changing social norms and reducing teen pregnancy, dating violence and addictions.

Since that last report, our evaluation team has been pouring over all three years of evaluation data, and we are excited to share the results with you.

Today, girls in Acaxochitlán have achieved:

  • Strong practices that prevent violence
  • Strong practices of gender equity
  • Strong practices that promote healthy masculinity
  • Strong knowledge on pregnancy prevention and STIs.

Listening to how these girls talk about their dreams, you know their world is forever opened. And their male peers now express masculinity in a healthy way and know how to prevent pregnancy and violence. Thank you for making this change possible! You should be proud of what you helped achieve.

Looking to the future, we have results that enable us to us strengthen the program further. The evaluation shows that with each passing year, teachers obtain more and more knowledge on the different risks, and continue to build their skills on how to address them in their classrooms. Parents, however, still need more support. And the evaluation found that students grow a lot in the first two years of the program, but not as much in the final year. This gives us important insights that girls and boys can be reached primarily in the first two years, and then in year 3 work more heavily with those who raise them, lead them and teach them.

We have shared these results with partners across the United States and Latin America. Your impact is reaching girls not just in our program, but in programs around the region. Thank you!

We can´t wait to tell you about what is coming next. Stay tuned!

With gratitude,
Yo quiero Yo puedo

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Organization Information

Yo Quiero Yo Puedo

Location: Mexico City, Mexico - Mexico
Website:
Project Leader:
Shoshana Grossman-Crist
Mexico City, Mexico
$28,478 raised of $50,000 goal
 
187 donations
$21,522 to go
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