A Health & Leadership peer trainer guides students
Our Health and Leadership Training program, which is conducted over six months through an afterschool workshop delivery model, concluded last November. A total of 890 girls and 915 boys, spread throughout 15 primary schools, were reached with our curriculum. This curriculum has nine topics for boys and 10 topics for girls that cover a range of issues, including gender equality, harmful traditional practices, sexual violence, sexual and reproductive health, leadership, healthy communication and relationships, and life skills.
In order to properly evaluate the students’ learnings and to identify areas for improvement, a baseline survey was distributed at the start of the program and followed by an endline survey. A high level summary of the results include:
- An increase in the proportion of students who felt satisfied with themselves, valued, and worthy of respect, indicating greater levels of self-esteem and self-confidence after they completed the program.
- An increase in the proportion of students who agreed with statements on children’s rights, like the right to education, the right to play, and the right to receive help and care.
- A decline in the proportion of students who agreed with statements that endorsed gender discrimination and traditional attitudes of bias for boys over girls.
In addition to the student data collected via the base and endline surveys, we regularly received feedback from other stakeholders involved in the program. Throughout the six months of the Health and Leadership Training program in 2021, our peer trainers reported increasing levels of student enthusiasm for the curriculum and eagerness to delve into socially sensitive topics, like reproductive and sexual health, gender violence, and puberty. Parents also shared that their children were more transparent about issues they faced in conversations at home. Given the strong stigma that surrounds many of the topics students learn about in our curriculum, the presence of these conversations and open attitudes of both students and parents is an exciting development for the progress of gender equity in the communities we serve.
Under our Linda Dada (“Protect a Sister” in Swahili) campaign, which addresses the rise of teen pregnancy from the COVID-19 pandemic through community intervention, we held monthly sessions throughout the past year for parents, local community leaders, and adolescent youth. At these sessions, participants discussed strategies for prevention and awareness, with a focus on issues of child rights violations such as female genital mutilation (FGM) and gender-based violence (GBV), and cyclical, intergenerational poverty as a consequence of teen pregnancy and early marriage.
Additionally, resources on the importance of adolescent health and responsible family planning were provided at each session. Since launching the campaign in December 2020, 1,153 community members have participated. Given the high levels of positive engagement and feedback that facilitators received throughout the year from attendees, we are excited to expand the campaign to two other surrounding communities this year to reach an additional 2,200 direct beneficiaries.
As 2022 continues, we look forward to providing further updates to our GlobalGiving supporters!
Our program officer for Linda Dada leads a session