The Abiola Bawuah Foundation (ABF), a non-governmental organisation has collaborated with the Youth Leaders (YoLe) Fellowship Programme (YLFP), an initiative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and donated to Odumse Basic School at Dodowa.
The donations were made to 70 adolescent girls who received educational materials (schoolbags, clear bags, pencils, pens, erasers), school uniforms and a dignity kit (consisting of sanitary towels, sanitary pad, underpants, toothbrush and toothpaste) each.
This gesture from the duo was to sensitise the girls on assertiveness as a weapon in the fight against Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV), personal hygiene and also raise awareness on how to achieve their future ambitions.
The Project Officer of Abiola Bawuah Foundation, Geraldine Osafo Ntiri expressed in an interview that partnering with the second cohort of YLFP was the right thing “since ABF is all about empowering the girl through education, mentorship programmes and encouragement.” As the Team Lead for the donation, she added that nothing should stop girls from going to school because they have the right to education just as boys do. Her assist, Sarfoh Danquah Jacob, could not agree less that more girls need to be educated.
The Team Lead of YLFP- UNFPA, Kobina Markin was also glad to have led his fellows undertake the cohort project. “This is a huge step for my team and I. The atmosphere of gratitude has driven me to do more after this and we believe that this outreach activity has helped to ensure that the potentials of these young girls are preserved and harnessed into desirable outcomes,” he said.
The Headmaster of the school, Mr. Emmanuel Arkwo, thanked the two organizations for coming to their aid and assisting their girls. “We are looking forward to your frequent visits and more interactions with them,” he reiterated.
At the end of the activities, Anita, a 14-year-old Primary 6 pupil shared how glad she was and that this gesture would go a long way to help her. “Before, I knew little about these things, but today, I have learnt a lot. I now know how to calculate my menstrual cycle very well and I have a new pant and pads to be changing when I’m menstruating. Now I’m going to JHS 1 and I already have new JHS uniform to wear so my mother does not have to sow a new one for me and this term I won’t buy exercise book again because now I have a lot. Oh, God will bless you and I can’t wait to go home and show it to my parents, they will be very happy. This has really energized me to learn more and pass all my exams to become a nurse in future. God richly bless you,” she said amidst tears of joy.
Abiola Bawuah Foundation (ABF) is a not-for-profit organization, working to lend a helping hand to disadvantaged, deprived and vulnerable girls in society. The foundation works to increase girl child enrolment in schools and ensure retention. In almost two years of its operation, ABF has ensured the return and retention of many girls to school in the Greater Accra, Ashanti and Central Regions. The foundation is man by trustees, Mrs. Abiola Bawuah, Mrs. Elisabeth Hayfron-Asare, Mrs. Jooda Oluseun, Madam Nkechi Denise and Nanahemaa Adwoa Awindor and run by Mr. Stephen Asiedu (Project Coordinator), Ms. Geraldine Osafo Ntiri (Project Officer), Ms. Angella Fleischer – Djoleto (Administrator) and Sarfoh Danquah Jacob (National Service Person).
About YLFP – UNFPA
The Youth Leaders (YoLe) Fellowship Programme (YLFP), an initiative of UNFPA Ghana, was launched with the aim of empowering young people and aiding in the realization of their full potential. The Fellowship was also launched in line with United Nations’ Youth Strategy. The programme is designed to infuse young people into the UNFPA system with a dedicated focus on exploring the youth perspective on UNFPA’s areas of interest, while also providing fellows opportunities for professional development and training in driving health innovation. Over the one-year period, Fellows are offered diverse grooming opportunities including intensive training in health innovation labs and professional development. They also get to plan and execute both CO outreaches and fellows-led engagements whilst contributing to developing innovative solutions towards promoting the country office’s programmes.