The year 2016 at the African Youth Alliance Group

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The year 2016 was rich in events.  We are so grateful to SPARK (http://www.sparksf.org/grantees/) who will sponsor the establishment of new clubs in Mbessa Village where 300 women and young girls will be trained on women’s rights, gender-based violence and production skills of arts and crafts, soap and body lotion for personal use and income generation. We look forward to working with them and implementing this project in 2017!

A supporter of the organization, Ebooks Heyday (https://ebooksheyday.com/) has offered us a small space for an office in Bamenda, the main city of the North West Region of Cameroon. We are now open every day and we have a space to meet, to plan activities and store our documents.

We created 3 clubs, reaching out to about 60 women and young girls in 3 villages of North West Cameroon.

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Club of young girls
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Young girls learning about their rights
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Young girls in a club leadership session

We worked with a network of 5 clubs in 3 villages of North West Cameroon. We regularly work and reach out to about 210 young girls and women. Within the clubs we hold bi-monthly meetings to discuss women’s rights, the social and cultural issues affecting them. Our volunteers facilitate the meetings and give short trainings/short talks to the women/girls on their rights and various topics (SRHR, hygiene and sanitation, menstrual hygiene, etc.).

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Young girls discussing their challenges in a club

We added a new component in our mentorship with girls with the support of Doreen, ar volunteer of the organisation. Doreen is a Biology teacher who has been volunteering with us for 5 years. She has 12 years of experience teaching chemistry, biology and mathematics to students (10 to 17 years) from secondary schools. With her support, we decided to include mentoring and coaching young girls on leadership skills, career objectives and we also encourage them to pursue STEM related studies.

We organized one community event (dances, dramas, role plays, etc…) where we invited the whole village and where women/girls passed messages on gender equality and access to socioeconomic rights.

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Rural women during a community event

We also trained 12 groups of women (about 60 rural women) on basic bookkeeping and financial management through the fruitful collaboration we have established with CDVTA Cameroon in 2015. (See article of December 2016 below)

Our objectives for the year 2017 are to:

  • Create 05 more clubs where we can mentor young girls and women. 3 clubs will be implemented with the support of Spark. 1 club will support young girls in Bamenda, this will be our first club in a city, we will mentor highly marginalized adolescent girls who are out of school (either because they have never attended school or have dropped out without gaining a basic education) to gain leadership and basic professional skills relevant for improving quality of their family lives. We will also implement a project of agriculture with a group of rural women.
  • Engage an administrative staff that will support administration and work at the office. It will greatly improve and assist work because the person employed will dedicate time to organize the work and field programs, search for new partners and work on a future project of a social enterprise we want to set up in 3 years.
  • Equip the office (computer, printer and camera): to facilitate work and administration for the organization. For now we have been depending on the personal equipment of the volunteers of the organization, which is not always convenient and which slows down our activities.
  • Create a website and more content and regular monthly updates on this blog, follow us to have more information about our activities during the year.

Thank you for believing with us that young girls and older women should have access to their full rights, lead meaningful and satisfactory lives, with dignity regardless of location.

We look forward to working with you all in 2017!