Msasani Girls Young Women's Empowerment Group
In conjunction with Msasani Secondary School, Team Vista has set up a Young Women's ‘hang-out’ space in a vacant classroom at the School based in Kaloleni.
Due to various issues in the community such as one or no parent households, many young school girls have to become heads of households; looking after the cooking and other domestic duties. This combined with a lack of electricity and space in the home often leads to them neglecting their study, becoming at risk of receiving poor grades or failing. As a result of these factors, often the girls become disheartened and disinterested in school – often dropping out and becoming pregnant at a young age.
Team Vista commenced the Young Women’s Empowerment Group in 2014 with the aim of giving 20-30 at-risk young women in form 3 and form 4 the opportunity to meet together every Friday afternoon and form a supportive group. Here they study together, listen to guest speakers – who are chosen for being positive role models in the community (most of these young women do not have a positive female role model in their lives), perform various activities of interest including netball games, yoga, meditation and self defence classes. The group discuss empowerment and women’s rights, health and wellbeing, talk about taboo subjects all in a safe space, and enjoy afternoon tea provided by Team Vista. Team Vista’s main desired outcome is to assist in breaking the cycle of poverty through the girls staying in school, studying hard, and having self-belief. This is an important project as it gives the girls something to strive for by fostering a sense of empowerment, and the confidence to achieve what they put their minds to.
To date we have had many successful young women from our Empowerment Group who are now in University or College. When they come back to the community for their holidays, they not only return to visit Team Vista home but they volunteer their time to Team Vista and spend time sharing their experiences with the Empowerment Group.