Girls speak out on...

...INCOME POVERTY

During our girls’ consultation, overwhelmingly, the biggest barrier to education identified by the girls was poverty. In fact, income poverty underlines all the issues that we have been sharing with you during our appeal. Read the stories of some of the girls impacted by poverty. 

Adama, Waterloo

Last year during the time when Ebola came, I lost my mother and my father to the disease and I’ve been unable to continue at school.

I’m 18 years old and I have four younger sisters and a brother aged between 2 and 15 years old. I’m the only one here to look after them.

When my mother and father died of Ebola there was no one to do anything for us. I went to talk to the man who owned the place we were living with my parents to ask if he would give us a chance to stay. But he said no. 

Read Adama's full story.

...TEACHER ACCOUNTABILITY

Throughout our appeal, we'll be taking time to hear directly from some of the girls we spoke to during our national consultation. Currently, we're focusing on... TEACHER ACCOUNTABILITY. Hear from teachers Florence, Yelie and Ragiatu on why girls aren't
in school. 

Girls’ education is important because when you educate a girl you have educated many people, in fact you have educated the nation.

Read Florence's full story

Parents think that girls belong in the kitchen, that they should not be better than men, so they force their daughters to marry rich men young.

Read Ragiatu's full story

Many girls want to learn, many are brilliant. Let them see role models of women who have achieved and are successful, and let them believe.

Read Yelie's full story

...SOCIAL SUPPORT

Throughout our appeal, we'll be taking time to hear directly from some of the girls we spoke to during our national consultation in Sierra Leone. One topic we're focusing on is SOCIAL SUPPORTHear from Mariam, Hannah, Beatrice, and Kadiatu on how a lack of support in pressure moments and times of crisis can drive a girl from school, or even from her home.

MARIAM, Waterloo 

After this Ebola crisis, people didn’t want their children to go to school because they felt there was no guarantee that if their children went to school they would come back safe. Parents were afraid. But we talked with them and discussed the reality with them, encouraging them to allow your children to go to school.

At that time, I was working with a girl who lost both parents. She was so discouraged and never wanted to attend school again.

Read Mariam's story

$75 ALLOWS OUR SOCIAL WORKERS TO TEACH A COMMUNITY THE VALUE OF GIRLS’ EDUCATION

...PARENTAL ATTITUDES

Throughout our appeal, we'll be taking time to hear directly from some of the young women we spoke to during our consultation. Right now, we're focusing on parental attitudes. Hear from Mariama, Fatu, Mary and Kadiatu on how parental attitudes towards girls' education has prevented them from staying in school.

MARIAMA, 18 years-old

I despair of the situation. I want to advocate to make sure that girls stay in school. If girls and their families are aware that education is important they will have the zeal to make sure they’re in school. 

People in this community do want to help and people can learn the importance of supporting girls through school. But if we don’t reach out to them for help, if we don’t try to help them change, then it will never happen.

Read Mariama's story

...TEEN PREGNANCY

 

REBECCA, 18 years-old

Then Ebola came. It took my mother. I lost my sister. I lost my Uncle.

So I was already feeling like I had little hope. And then I fell pregnant. And the guy who got me pregnant denied it was him. He’s gone now and I’m left on my own to look after my son by doing small jobs here and there. People might give me Le3000 [60c] and then I can buy some food...

...if my mother had found the money or my father had been able to get work, I swear to God, I would have taken my education so seriously. I feel that so strongly. But if you have nothing, what are you going to do?

Read Rebecca's story