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Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education

by Days for Girls International
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education
Empower African Girls with Hygiene and Education

What an amazing West Africa celebration - thanks to you! On May 28th, Menstrual Hygiene Day, the West Africa Days for Girls team was able to host a week-long celebration. The festivities were kicked off by two distributions of 300 DFG Kits to schools in the greater Accra community. In the middle of the week, the office held a community stakeholder meeting with 120 area school, government, and local officials, the Ghana Health and Education service, traditional leaders, students, and parents. The collective events helped to solidify DFG Ghana’s commitment to work in this particular district.

 They also participated in their first ever national forum which was televised on menstrual hygiene in Ghana. Your contributions made it possible for Days for Girls to not only participate in the event, but have an instrumental role in the planning, coordination, and execution of the directives set forth by the event. We’re grateful for your donations that help to provide the leadership to ensure the menstrual hygiene agenda continues to climb up the list of priorities for government, civil society, and private sector interventions alike.

Other successful activities were possible because of your support was the ability to visit seven of our Enterprises in Ghana to support their operational needs and inspect for quality control. Based on these visits, the team is developing a program for an upcoming Regional Workshop in the fall which will largely be focused on strengthening their small businesses.The team was also able to host our Leadership Launchpad (Enterprise training) in office for two new Enterprises and conduct community assessments for an additional three potential expansion sites for DFG Enterprise operations. Stay tuned -- more exciting news to report in the coming months as we grow to reach Every Girl. Everywhere. Period. 

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We thank you for your support!



Ladies of the ASIGE Enterprise in Bolgatanga
Ladies of the ASIGE Enterprise in Bolgatanga
Leaders share a laugh at the East Africa workshop
Leaders share a laugh at the East Africa workshop

“I know no more fear and really I feel that in myself I have the passion of helping people based on what I have been learning.” Tuzo of Butembo, Democratic Republic of Congo reflected on her journey since launching her Days for Girls Enterprise more than 2 years ago.

Thanks to your generosity and support, Tuzo was able to attend the 2019 East Africa Workshop for DfG Enterprise Leaders this past March. This gathering brought together more than 100 East African women and men from around the region, who are working tirelessly to shatter stigmas for girls and women and create more equitable, healthy communities through their DfG Enterprises. And while our East African leaders were deep in discussion and learning, the Southern Africa leaders were gearing up for their second annual workshop that took place in April and brought together all 11 Southern African Enterprises. 

While a workshop might seem like a simple idea, we’ve seen firsthand how far reaching the impact can be. DfG Enterprise Leaders come from all walks of life – some never completed secondary school while others hold Masters degrees. Some leaders are experts in sewing, while others cultivate a passion for community outreach. The diversity of ages, religions, and languages is astounding. Yet in these workshops, we see all these individuals united by a deep commitment to creating change in their communities and fostering opportunities for girls and women. After learning about quality control measures, marketing strategies, record keeping, partnership development, and so many other topics, the Enterprise leaders go home inspired and ready to take action.

We want to thank YOU for taking action to support these leaders and the incredible work they’re doing day in and day out. But don’t just take it from me, Joyce our Enterprise leader from the Vihiga, Kenya Enterprise might have said it best: “I hope God richly blesses those that donated to make this possible. Usually for us, we pay for education. But here education is free.”

As we ponder our resolutions for the new year, we can’t help but reflect on the incredible journey that was 2018! With your support, we saw our Enterprise program grow to include 11 more countries and 28 new Enterprises, equipping local women (and some men!) with the resources and trainining needed to earn additional income and promote  long-lasting, environmentally-friendly menstrual health solutions for the women and girls in their communities. In just 12 months, our Africa programs sold more than 35,505 DfG Kits and donated tens of thousands more to girls and women in need of sustainable menstrual solutions. Your dedidcation to DfG's mission, combined with incredible teamwork, planning, evaluation, and hours in the field made all of this possible! 

And we have even more in store for 2019. This year opens up a whole new horizion of opportunities and initiatives. We are doubling down on our commitment to monitoring & evaluation in order to ensure we are serving the women and girls we reach in the best way we can.

The West Africa team is poised to travel around the region supporting new Enterprises and reaching girls in brand new communities – including countries like Togo, Senegal, and Burkina Faso, to name a few.

The East Africa Team is gearing up for a large school-based pilot that will see thousands of girls participating in menstrual health clubs and partnering to improve menstrual hygiene practices and infrastructure.

Meanwhile, in South Africa, Enterprises are forging ahead to advocate for menstrual health policies in the government, including the adoption of a standard for washable pads in both South Africa and Swaziland. We are grateful for partners like you that make all of this work possible; together, we plan to make 2019 a year to remember!

On November 1st, Days for Girls will celebrate 10 years since its founding. That is 10 years of sewing, teaching, learning, laughing, and breaking barriers for girls and women. In celebration of the thousands of girls, women, boys, men, and communities that have been part of this effort, Days for Girls launched the Global Girls Festival to run throughout the month of October - happily coinciding with International Day of the Girl on Oct. 11th.

This festival gave extra liners for Enterprises that are making and selling DfG Kits, and encouraged a flurry of distributions, with the ultimate goal of reaching 100,000 women and girls. And guess what - thanks to the efforts of our local Offices, Enterprise partners, volunteer Chapters, and generous contributors like you, we are on track to surpass that goal! That's right - because of you, 100,000+ women and girls will have gained women's health education and their very own DfG Kit by November 1st. Check out some of the photos to see how our partners are celebrating throughout Africa and the world! 

photo credit: Megan Williams, Splash Ethopia
photo credit: Megan Williams, Splash Ethopia

If you want to see who will change the world, just take a look at the girl in this photo.  She is proudly standing in front of hundreds of her classmates (with a DfG pad in her hand)  to talk about menstruation and the importance of breaking the silence and stigma that surround this topic.  You could say she is brave, but that is an understatement. She is the future leader of a generation that will be unstoppable. Together, with her classmates, she is making sure that every girl (and boy) has the education needed to ensure dignity and opportunity for all.

Your support for our work in Africa made this event and others possible. Your donations allowed us to join forces with Splash and Whiz Kids to host this celebration on May 28, Menstrual Hygiene Day. Each organization brought valuable perspectives to the table including expertise in the areas of WASH - toilets and hand washing (Splash), community & youth mobilization (Whiz Kids), and menstrual health education and solutions (Days for Girls). The program included the distribution of 500 DfG Kits and delivery of Ambassador of Women’s Health (AWH) education to each girl who received a DfG Kit.

To prepare for the day, the Days for Girls team trained representatives from Splash Ethiopia to be able to conduct our AWH program and then pass on what they learned to student leaders. Whiz Kids organized a series of interactive activities including dramas and presentations. The entire program showcased the importance of collaboration, partnership, and the awesome strength of girl power.

Thank you!

 

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Organization Information

Days for Girls International

Location: Bellingham, WA - USA
Website:
Project Leader:
Libby Daghlian
Bellingham, WA United States
$72,017 raised of $90,000 goal
 
1,957 donations
$17,983 to go
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