This year the Girls Project has respected the tradition it has established during the first year of the project in 2016: to bring together, after nine months of hard work by girls, parents of students, teachers, and students to pay tribute to each person for their involvement during the school year. We call this event Feast for Feedback, because it is both a celebration and a chance for the whole village to be involved with the Girls Project. So, this year in the school yard of Kolimba on a Saturday like no other, parents of students, teachers, and girls shared a day of joy dedicated to the schooling of girls.
For the last three years, Mali Rising has been working closely with girl students in three pilot villages. You can't help a girl stay and succeed in school without helping her overcome certain obstacles that prevent her from advancing or succeeding. Leadership training is an opportunity for us to overcome these obstacles. A leading girl must be able to express herself in public, defend her vision, lead a team, and defeat her shyness.
We are trying something new, and it is so exciting we wanted to share! Our Girls Project Coordinator, Hindaty, wanted to help our Girls Project girls build their leadership skills. Hindaty found a powerful female trainer and together they designed a wonderful training for the girls. We just tested the training in the first partner village, and it was inspiring! Check out the photos…
It’s not too late! Really. If you celebrate Christmas and you’ve hit that full panic and feel you’ve left things too late to ever find a meaningful gift for the woman in your life…you’re in luck! You can still give the gift of 50 Women membership to your loved one, and the gift of an education to girls in Mali.
As part of keeping girls in school, Mali Rising’s Girls Project initiated a new activity that will allow girls to have not only theoretical knowledge but also practical knowledge. This month, our session with the girls focused on "good nutrition.” The purpose of this activity is to teach girls the different nutritious foods, the composition of a balanced breakfast, the importance of breakfast especially for teenagers, how to eat well. The aim is to give girls the love of school through the preparation of new dishes with local products. Our dish of the day was bean dumplings and vegetable salads.
One of the very best days of our recent trip was without a doubt the day of the big soccer match between the Beneko Birds and the Simidji Girls. These two village teams are made up of members of our Girls Groups in two of our three pilot villages for the Girls Project. Sports, and soccer in particular, are an important part of the Project — building grit and resiliency in our girls. And oh my is it working.
We’re looking for a few (okay, 50) good women to help girls in Mali go to school and use their education to change their lives, and to change our world. Are you one of those 50 Women?
At this time of year there is just so much going on at Mali Rising schools that it is hard to keep everyone up to date on all the news. Year-end exams and summer are rushing at our students, just like they are here in the United States. But I wanted to share just a little peek at something powerful girls involved with our Girls Project have been up to -- meeting with career women in Mali to explore options for their future.
We love gritty girls. Gritty, you say? Yes! Grit, leadership skills, teamwork abilities, and self-confidence are critical traits for strong kids. These traits are especially important for girls in Mali, who must overcome many obstacles to get the education they deserve. Thanks to our donors, we support the development of all these traits through participation with our new girls' soccer teams. Check out this blog post for news and photos from the first-ever, inter-school Mali Rising soccer match!
As regular blog readers will know, we are very proud of our new Girls Project. In its very first year, the Project returned wonderful results for our girl students in Mali. As we launch the Project's second year, there's even more going on. And with so many of you particularly interested in supporting our girls, we created a new hub for tracking news about the Girls Project...