The vocational skills training for the out-of-school girls took different forms in year 2020.
The training provided opportunity for the beneficiaries to learn diverse skills that are marketable and can be used as a source of livelihood.
The different skills ranged from:
Fashion and design
Makeover/tieing of headgear
Confectionery and others
During the Christmas holidays, majority of the trainees used that opportunity to offer services and earned some income which helped them provided for themselves hence making them not vulnerable to sexual abuse.
According to Miriam "I am very happy that i took on this skill. Even though my parents cannot send me to school, i am doing something better with my life, i make money from tieing headgear as you can see and also use the m oney to buy my basic needs and support my parents. I hope to develop bigger in life and i will train other young girls too who are vulnerable free of charge"
A review meeting was held with beneficiaries of the entrepreneurship training in the last week of August 2020 after the easing of the lockdown due to COVID-19 to find out how they were able to utilize the skills acquired effectively during the lockdown and how they were to avoid been exploited.
Interacting with the young women who are undergoing training at the Girls’ Power Initiative (GPI) training centre during a review meeting recorded the following as success stories:
“from the skills I acquired before the covid-19 lockdown, I have been able to do few jobs and used the money to take care of myself and my child” – Esther
“I can now sew, as I was able to sew a gown for a client who did her traditional marriage, that alone announced me in my community” – Mrs. Jane
“though I couldn’t sew much to make enough money, but I was able to train 3 other girls in my community who didn’t have the opportunity to be part of the training I am attending. I am happy that, I have been able to help other young girls like me” – Mary
“I am happy that, I took on this opportunity. My mates who are teachers in my community, were not paid all through the period of the covid-19 lockdown, but that was not my case as I was sewing and making my little money. The little money helped me contribute to feeding in the home instead of going to beg, my guardian was happy with me” – veronica
GPI during the lockdown used the media to send out information to her beneficiaries on the need to stay safe and avoid be exploited rather make good use of their time and skills.
These beneficiaries are to serve as motivators to the upcoming trainees.
The GPI entrepreneurial skills training differed a bit as we added other skills like: electrical, aluminum, welding in addition to the fashion designing. The trainees who are mostly out of school young women were excited to have had the opportunity to choose from various skills. The essence of the expansion is to debunk the societal beliefs that, certain skills cannot be done by women thereby bringing the issues gender inequality to play.
GPI believes in gender equality and equity and so, gives opportunity to young women to achieve their full potentials and live healthy lives free of abuse and all forms of abuse and exploitation.
Outcome: within this short period of training, the unit has recorded great successes and achievements as stated below from a fulfilled beneficiary.
Catherine who choosed to learn welding started the training even when many people thought she will not be able to withstand the pressure of work carried out by welders, she was not discouraged but rather got encoragement from GPI. She went through the training and today is a proud welder. She presented what she was able to come up with during the exhibition. She produced a cassava grinding Machine as seen below.
According to Catherine: “I have always wanted to learn welding, but I didn’t have the opportunity and people were always telling me, I am a girl so I should change my mind, but when I saw this opportunity, I grabbed it and knew it was time for me to show my interest”
Today, Catherine is one of the many beneficiaries who got start up equipment to start up their business.
The beneficiaries expressed appreciation to GPI for the rare opportunity provided them.
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