Voice Awake Initiative Provides Financial Assistance, Resources to Help Underprivileged Girls in Salima District Return to School
Voice Awake Initiative is working to address the high number of school dropouts in Salima district, which is often caused by issues such as early marriages, pregnancies, and poverty.
Malawi: The Voice Awake Initiative is working to address the high number of school dropouts in Salima district, which is often caused by issues such as early marriages, pregnancies, and poverty, writes Peter Chilongo.
Additionally, the district's location on a lakeshore makes it particularly vulnerable to exploitation by tourists, fishermen, and businesses seeking sexual favours from poor girls.
To combat this, the initiative is partnering with the government to provide financial assistance for school fees and other resources, including sanitary materials, to underprivileged girls in the area.
Vanessa Mwangala, the director of the initiative, said, “Among every 10 girls, only five are able to finish their secondary school education due to a serious lack of school fees. So, as an organization, we thought it wise to respond swiftly by bringing a smile to the face of a girl child who is passionate about going back to school.”
She added that the initiative is also providing additional resources, such as basic needs and learning materials, to promote education and motivate students.
Senior Chief Kalonga praised the initiative for its efforts to improve the education status in the district.
"We are so happy and grateful to Voices Awake for the timely support of the school for our girls. Instead of going out for early marriages and unwanted pregnancies, the girls who were greatly in need of school fees will find themselves in the corridors of schools, which is an exciting development," he said.
Emma Kabvala, a student from Msalura Community Day Secondary School who is a recipient of the initiative, expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to continue her education.
"Poverty robbed us of the gift of education, but with the coming of the initiative, we are so happy, glad, and grateful to this girls' empowerment program that has managed to bring us back to school," she said.
Emma encouraged her fellow beneficiaries to make the most of this opportunity by taking their studies seriously.
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