Whilst progress is being made to protect and educate young girls in Sierra Leone, not enough is being done. This international women’s day, we are advocating for more investment in girls in Sierra Leone. The scripture encourages us to be educated, highlighting its value as higher than Silver and Gold (Proverbs 16:16 ESV).
March 2020 brought the end of the 10-year ban prohibiting pregnant girls and teenage mothers from attending school. Alongside this ban being lifted, several policies were put in place to further the access young children had to education. Developments have been made to facilitate all young people’s access to school, including the Free Quality School Education Program, introduced in August 2018.
Whilst these were just a few years ago, some more changes can surely be made to pave a better road for young girls and women in Sierra Leone. Due to child marriages and the prevailing issue of early pregnancies before the age of 18, girls continue to be more likely to drop out of school. Providing better sex education for young people and addressing the issue of child marriages are just a couple of things that be done. Consequently, a substantial change could be made, economically, for girls, women, and the country altogether.
Statistics show that for every additional year a girl spends in secondary school, the risk of child marriage is reduced by almost 10% with the early childbearing age dropping by 4%. Moreover, it is proven that children raised by very young mothers are at a greater risk of dying before the age of 5, an unfortunate statistic that can be easily challenged and resolved if more was done to develop the academic standards and morale young girls experience.
-We have included is a video of an amazing woman who is challenging the statistics in Sierra Leone as the ONLY female teacher in a school of 300+ kids. She volunteers her time and is not paid for work because she wants to inspire the girls. She mentors the younger girls, advising them to focus on themselves and their education, ignoring the pressures of men and family. Her efforts are part of the progress we need to see more of in Sierra Leone.
Donate here as part of your investment in girls and women in Sierra Leone