In Mauritania, only 42% of females are literate. Girls are restricted to chores inside the home as "house servants." This prevents them from attending school and developing the skills they need to succeed in life and understand their rights. MindLeaps is addressing this problem through a unique creative arts approach that attracts girls to safe spaces. We provide school sponsorship, psychological health, and nutrition, setting the girls on a path to education, careers, & positive life decisions.
Girls in Mauritania are some of the most vulnerable in the world. In El Mina, an urban slum of the capital city Nouakchott, girls are trying to escape lives of pregnancy, sex trafficking, early childhood marriage (37% of girls under 18) and child labor (16% of children under 14). The main goal of this project is to secure the lives of 120 girls through education, psychosocial health, and nutrition, and stimulate a transformation in the community of El Mina as to how girls are valued and treated.
The girls' lives will be secured by drawing them off the streets through MindLeaps dance program, which develops 7 cognitive & life skills - such as memorization, discipline, creativity - needed for success in school and life. The girls will receive 3 additional services to change their lives: sponsorship in formal education, psychosocial counseling, and nutritional support, enabling the girls to develop confidence, academic readiness, & the sustained ability to make positive life decisions.
The collective change of a large enough cohort of girls will have the power to create a community-wide shift in how girls are viewed - reinforced by the female African leaders on MindLeaps staff. Because of MindLeaps' program, girls will be enrolled in school, more families will see the value in educating their daughters, and health levels will improve. As these girls become occupied and focused on building healthy lives, child marriage, teen pregnancy and prostitution rates will fall in El Mina