Reproduction health is a major challenge in schools that requires collective efforts to ensure the provision of hygiene facilities for students, especially girls. Adolescent’s girls who experience their mensuration for the first time in schools face challenges due to absence of sanitary pads. The victims are normally ridicule by their male counterpart when soiled with this natural condition and mostly feel shy and disgrace to return to school thereby increasing girl’s school dropout. Realizing the urgent need of sanitary pads in school first Aid box, songtaba has supported 60 leadership members of girls club in Nanumba to hold engagement meeting with key stakeholders on the need for sanitary pad in first Aid box. Stakeholder’s presents at the meeting were GES, PTA/SMC and Assembly members.
The girls pleaded with the stakeholders and appeal to them to immediately attend to their needs to promote retention and completion of girls at all levels, this is what the president of Nanumba Girls club movement , Miss Abena has to say, “We are calling on all key stakeholders in education, including district assembly, Ghana education service and duty bearers to as matter of urgency include sanitary pads in school first Aid box to ensure safety and decent management of menstruation for first time girls. Funds received from government and partners for school development should make provision for sanitary pads”.
The stakeholders were excited and promised to hold further discussion to ensure their demand are met for effective teaching and learning in school.
Girls' club executives educate colleagues on SHS courses
By Abdulai Suale | Senior programme officer
Girls’ club executives educate colleagues on available courses at senior high school.
Girls club executives across partner’s school in Nanumba use the opportunity of final years students BECE registration to educate colleague’s on available courses at the senior high. The education is mean to guide final year students at the junior high school make an informed choice on courses to pursuit at the senior high school level. songtaba in collaboration with school guidance and counseling teachers had been supporting girls club members on this type of education over the years . However been empowered enough, the 2020/2021 final year girl’s club executives took it as an executive’s responsibilities to support colleague’s select school and courses for 2020 BECE school placements .
Girls clubs at Nanumba North and south districts took part in these valuable and educative activities. 1,125 girls in 32 clubs from 19 schools benefitted from the education. The girls were told by their colleagues, every course offered at the senior high school has a corresponding career opportunity. Hence no course is designed in vacuum. Career such as medical doctors, nurses, midwives were mentioned as profession one can do by pursuing science and its related courses at the senior high school. Not only but a person can become an accountant, Bank manager, sales officer, Auditor etc by pursuing business courses at the senior high school.
This is what 16 years Alimatu, girl’s club president from ponaa junior high school has for her colleagues: “Members from final year class, it very important to know the kinds of profession you wish to belong in future. This will help you know course and school you need to attend for your senior high school education. All senior high do not offered same courses across the country, some are science schools, business, Agriculture and Arts schools. If you intend working in the hospital as doctor, nurse, midwives, then you have to do science courses at the senior high school or attend science school. Those of us hoping to work in banks, accountants, auditors and any other business related work have to do business course at the senior high school or better still attend business senior schools. Also to be a lawyer, teacher and any of the security services, then you need to do any course of your choice at the senior high including general Arts etc. I therefore advice my final year students colleagues to go through their performance in class and know where their strength and desire is, before making school choices and course for the impending 2020 BECE registration. Thank you”.
Promotion girl's personal hygiene at the Community
By Abdulai Suale | Senior programme officer
Promotion girl’s personal hygiene at the Community level
Girl personal hygiene is an important event in the development stage of the girl child. Realizing the need for parents to know and support their girl child at this critical developmental period in their lives. Songtaba and their partners launched a vigorous community level education on girl’s personal hygiene promotion, by distributing sanitary pad to girls from 12 to 18 years of age while educating parents to adopt and practice same to promote safe space for their wards in school.
The Executive Director of Songtaba took parents through special needs of teenage girls at some point in their lives. If such needs are not provided, it demoralizes the girl’s child in life, which subsequently affects her academic performance. Hence she encouraged parents at the programme communities to take up their responsibilities for the success of our girls in future. About 579 teenage girls benefited from this package in Nanumba district.
Failure of most parents to live up to their responsibilities causes these girls to absent themselves from school for no fault of theirs but negligence of parents in ensuring their safety in school. Teenage girls who experience mensuration, needs hygiene materials to ensure safety and to prevent them from being ridicule by colleagues in their menstrual periods. Most parents do not pay critical attention to this developmental stage in their children lives. The unfortunate girls are left at their own mercy to take care of themselves. Girls who cannot acquire sanitary pads nor have any alternative skills soil themselves in the event of this experience, in the midst of colleagues at school. These victims sometime dropped out of school to prevent future shame and disgrace in schools.
The school governance and infrastructure system in most part of Ghana has not provided safe spaces for girls to change themeselves in the event they are in schools and suddenly experiencing their mensurartion. As part of the campaign is engaging local authorities and the Ghana education service to ensure that schools are gender friendly by providing these safe spaces for girls.
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