October 14, 2015 By Ibrahim Tarawallie
Child protection agency, Street Child of Sierra Leone, Friday (October 9) announced that it will embark on a nationwide consultation on issues affecting adolescent girls’ education in the country.
The one-month long exercise will listen to the voices of over 2,000 girls on their description of the barriers and challenges facing adolescent girls as well as concerned adults.
Speaking during a press launch hosted at Sensi Tech Innovation Hub in Aberdeen, the organization’s Country Director, Emmanuel Kelfa Kargbo, explained that they will be having five teams across the country with the responsibility to hold dialogues with over 100 adolescent girls, parents and caregivers, among others.
He continued that the various teams will brainstorm with them as to how these issues can be best tackled – both in terms of immediate actions to help girls’ education right now, as well as actions for critical long-term change.
While promising to share the findings of the exercise later this year in a formal report, which could be of benefit to local and international partners already active on the issue, Mr. Kargbo noted that its results will decisively shape the programme initiatives Street Child chooses to pursue on behalf of adolescent girls.
“For too long, especially in but not limited to, our rural areas, the issue of adolescent female education has been neglected to the detriment not just of these girls but to us all,” he said and added that they have decided that the issue of addressing the education of adolescent girls will be at the forefront of their work.
The Street Child boss expressed certainty that so much can be done with regards to the issue and that in the interest of transparency and mutual encouragement, it is a work they are undertaking to continue to keep the public fully informed.
Also speaking, Programme Advisor for Street Child UK, Megan Lees, maintained that a questionnaire will be developed which the various teams will use to carry out the work.
She added that each of the teams is expected to hold at least three focus group discussions with girls in and out of school, stakeholders and beneficiaries of the organization’s projects.