NATIONAL GIRLS' CAMP PDF Print E-mail

The First LadyIntroduction
Sierra Leone continues to make progress in the transition from a humanitarian emergency to recovery and development and in consolidation of the peace that has prevailed since the signing of the peace agreement in 2002. Still, this progress coexists with significant fragility emanating from a number of factors, including security threats; accountability, transparency and corruption issues; weak administration of human rights and the rule of law; economic disempowerment of a large part of the population; and significant regional disparities, especially between rural and urban areas.

Sierra Leone remains a 'fragile state' with a public sector that has limited capacity and that lacks even the basic facilities to allow it to deliver adequate services to the majority of its citizens. The hopes and promises of a better life following the peace agreement do not seem to be matched by progress in basic services, employment opportunities and a well-developed infrastructure.
In Sierra Leone, youths comprise one third of the population, and two thirds of the country's young people are unemployed. Youth unemployment remains one of the most pressing, both from a development and a peace-consolidation perspective. Overall, 69 per cent of primary-school-age children are attending primary school, so special efforts will be needed for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goal target on education. There are, however, positive indicators, including the development of an Education Sector Plan, as part of the Fast Track Initiative; progress towards the allocation of 20 per cent of the national budget to education; and strong political will on behalf of the Government to achieve the Millennium Development Goals in education, as well as the Education for All goals.
Objectives
The program's objective is to empower girls through mentorship, building their self-confidence and challenging them to discover and fulfill their potential.
Each mentee is paired up with a mentor from among a group of women who have contributed tremendously to national development. The mentees benefit from a daily dialogue meeting and also form a one-on-one relationship with her mentor. The Camp's sessions foster self-respect and love, leadership skills, creativity, critical thinking and collaboration.
The philosophy behind the Camp is to empower young women by having them think critically about themselves, their identity and their goals, while breaking down negative messages fed to them by society and the media. The Camp will also support young women to develop their self-esteem and make informed decisions for themselves in the face of severe societal pressure; illustrating that they have a network of support and resources available to them.

Topics/Curriculum

1. Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence Building
2. Sexual and Reproductive Health
3. Broader Women's Issues and Future Options
4. Community Service and Integrity
5. Healthy Life Styles/ Sports
6. Road Safety
7. Entrepreneurship
8. Entertainment and Creativity
9. Technology as a tool for empowerment

The Impacts
 A community of young female leaders in Sierra Leone, who seek and value community action and involvement
 Young women who recognize their self-worth and potential
 Young women with increased self-esteem and decision-making abilities
 Young women who envision themselves as leaders now and in the future
 Positive role models for young women, which encourage their ambition, self-confidence and growth, allowing them to trust and showing them that they are supported.
 Young women with more positive attitudes toward school, improved academic performance, increased trust for adults and teachers, higher levels of self-confidence and a greater ability to express their feelings

Methodology
The Camp is aimed at developing key personal life skills critical to healthy development and success later in life. More than 40 Girls aged 15 - 18 from all over the country will gather here in Freetown for 7 days.
The Camp will offer life-changing self-development opportunities to the participants, explore issues they are concerned about, teach them new skills and tools to enhance their self-development, and discover their full potential so as to enable them become active contributors of our evolving society.
During the 7 days, our "Great Women of Substance" will be invited to interact with the participants.

Girls CampParticipants
Forty Girls aged 15-18 years from across Sierra Leone will gather at the Catholic Guest House at St. Edwards Secondary School, King Tom Freetown. Three girls who have performed excellently in the last BECE Exams will be identified from each district. A total of Thirty-Six (36) girls will come from the provinces and four girls from the western area.
 

Camp Objectives
Provide a supportive and nurturing environment for girls to explore and develop basic skills
• Offers girls a gender neutral environment to learn and practice new skills without fear of being teased or isolated
• Develop greater self confidence and better self-esteem for girls who tackle challenging situations
• Develop a safety first attitude and 'we can do it ' mindset
• Introduce hard working girls to women role models who have achieved success

 

Expected outcome
• New healthy life styles developed
• Improved communication skills
• Improved leadership skills
• Young female leaders with an independent mindset and the capacity of taking decisions from an informed point of view.
• A generation of young entrepreneurs groomed for business opportunities in Sierra Leone.
• Knowledge on road safety measures enhanced.
• Moral values promoted in a community of young leaders.