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Msichana Kwanza Program (Girl First Program)

Psycho social support through a gender specific education program to young girls aged 8-15 affected after the earthquake in Kagera Region.

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What problem does your innovation solve?

The gender specific education program aims at healing the psycho social wounds that young girls encountered in the earthquake aftermath and rebuild their psychology while giving them prevention education against danger and harm from challenging issues facing them such as GBV, HIV/AIDS, teenage pregnancies, VAC and early marriages making them confident, feel loved, free from fear and equipping them with relevant life skills transforming them into active survivors rather than passive victims.

Explain your innovation.

The gender specific education program aims at empowering affected girls with relevant life skills and create awareness on how to cope with emergency situations (e.g. earthquakes) hence making them feel safe and loved, boost their self-esteem and inspire them to further their education. The gender specific education will be designed as a toolkit to be used with an all-inclusive approach to tackle challenges, issues and situations that children and young girls aged 8-15 years old are exposed to during and after emergency situations. Critical issues to be addressed will include all issues affecting children and young girls in Kagera Region such as teenage pregnancies and child marriages, GBV, VAC and HIV/AIDS focusing on preventive education. The aim is to empower and educate girls through preventive education utilizing effective approaches to prevention, including consistent mentor ship, positive role models, supportive peer groups and interactive teaching methods, culturally specific and gender specific programming, and experiential education.

Who benefits?

Msichana Kwanza program targets school going girls aged 8-15, their parents/guardians and teachers in the 8 affected districts of Kyerwa, Misenyi, Bukoba Urban, Karagwe, Bukoba Rural and Muleba where approximately 69 classrooms were destroyed by the earthquake.

How is your innovation unique?

Msichana Kwanza is a research based program intended to use interactive educational program and positive role models to attend to the serious issues facing young girls in Kagera region as preventive education. The focus of this program is on girls ages 8 to 15 however the lessons in the toolkit can also be adaptable for both younger and older girls. The approach to be used will involve participatory, facilitation and peer education as a strong combination pattern in the delivery of the program specifically targeting girls first. Unlike many existing programs which do not specifically target young girls using a similar approach Msichana Kwanza program will ensure sustainability through peer education specifically addressing the needs of young girls.

What are some of your unanswered questions about the idea?

The Msichana Kwanza toolkit should be designed as a collaborative effort among educational stakeholders in Kagera region with the support from teachers, educational officers, parents and experts taking into consideration specific issues that affect young girls including coping up in and after emergency situations. Msichana Kwanza program toolkit will be developed from the best practices and informed evidence based research. Current stage is developing the conceptual framework from which research, design and implementation of the program will be carried out.

Tell us more about you.

Youth Empowerment Reach Foundation (YEAR-F) is a child and youth focused organization working towards peace, unity, social and economic empowerment through advocacy, psycho social support, sensitization, community outreaches, networking, educational support, environmental protection and conservation. YEAR-F is in the preliminary stages of registration as a national NGO with its headquarters in Mwanza, Lake Zone Tanzania.

What is the primary type of emergency setting where your innovation would operate?

  • Natural disaster
  • Other (please specify in next question)

Emergency Setting - Elaborate

Msichana Kwanza program also intends to address serious issues affecting young girls that hinder their personal and educational growth exposing them to emergency situations such as teenage pregnancies, early marriages, GBV, VAC and HIV/AIDS prevalent in Kagera region. The program will give them preventive education acting as a bullet proof protecting them from exposure to danger.

Where will your innovation be implemented?

Msichana Kwanza program will be implemented in the 8 affected districts of Kyerwa, Misenyi, Bukoba Urban, Karagwe, Bukoba Rural and Muleba where approximately 69 classrooms were destroyed by the earthquake tailored to address the specific problems young girls face in the region.

Experience in Implementation Country(ies)

  • Yes, for more than one year.

In-country Networks

YEAR-F will partner and collaborate with stakeholders in education i.e. teachers, education officers both at ward, district and regional levels, parents, local government, experts and/or other NGOs.

Sector Expertise

  • I've worked in a sector related to my innovation for more than a year.

Sector Expertise - Elaborate

YEAR-F has a team of experts who have many years of experience in facilitating, moderating and managing community development activities. However, YEAR-F will partner with teachers, parents, education officers and other stakeholders in implementing this program.

Innovation Maturity

  • Early Stage Innovation: I am exploring my innovation, refining, researching, and gathering inspiration.

Organization Status

  • We are not registered but plan to in the future.

Organization Location

Mwanza, Lake Zone Tanzania

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