IKasi wants to provide an environment that encourages confidence and independence amongst all of the girls, which is a large reason why it was proposed to African Impact to start a Girl Impact program for IKasi. The Girl Impact program is a class offered after school for one hour a week on Tuesday’s. In class the girls learn about puberty, self-esteem, and how to advocate for their rights. Providing them with the knowledge of what rights they have is crucial in the community. This understanding gives them the ability to debate and stand up for themselves.
“Our children are our greatest treasure. They are our future. Those who abuse them tear at the fabric of our society and weaken our nation”-Nelson Mandela
Children are the future of the world and it is our job to make sure they have the proper knowledge and resources to make smart decisions to live a long, happy, and healthy life. African Impact created the Girl Impact program to do just that. The program helps different generations understand each other and measures where each individual adult or child is at across the board in terms of education. No age limit is placed on the programs they offer but for the IKasi life skills program most of the girls range from 10 to 15.
It is not uncommon for the girls to be raised by Grandparents or other relatives such as Aunts or Uncles for various reasons. This means some of the young girls lose parts of their childhood through taking responsibility of younger siblings and extra chores at home. For example, they are expected to cook and clean for the family and go pick up the younger children from school. This program wants to give these girls a chance to regain a piece of their childhood that has been stolen by responsibility and poor situation.
Currently the class is only offered to two of the four schools IKasi works at because of a lack of resources and staff. Sadly, this means half of the girls do not have access to the program because it is too far to travel after school. Having more volunteers or another staff member would allow the program to expand within IKasi and help even more girls. In addition to staff, more equipment such as computers would allow the class to better equip the girls for future education in a university. When asked, many of the girls will explain how the life skills program is something they look forward to each week. Excitement over education, and watching the girls develop into the women they were meant to be is an amazing process that we hope to continue for a very long time.