YEF partners Standard Chartered Bank on girls development

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The Youth Empowerment Foundation (YEF), an NGO, has partnered with Standard Chartered Bank on enhancing the sexual knowledge, behaviours, education, financial management and skills of schoolgirls in Lagos State.

The partnership, through the GOAL Project, on Friday organised a quiz competition among a dozen girls secondary schools in Lagos State.

Among schools that participated in the quiz were Community Junior High, Onike; Girls Junior High, Ijero; Girls Junior High, Adebola Baptist School; Onitolo Community Junior High; Wesley Girls School; Gbaja Girls; Surulere Girls High-Jibowu; Itolo Girls Junior.

Others include the Ideal Girls Junior School; Clegg Girls Junior; Surulere Girls Junior, Bode Thomas; Akoka Junior; Herbert Macaulay Junior and Eric Moore Senior High School.

Speaking with TONTRENDS, Mrs Iwalola Akin-Jimoh, Executive Secretary, YEF, said: “This is important to us, the more young girls who are able to learn from each other the more they are able to reinforce their positive ability and their general behaviour.

“We appreciate the Lagos State Ministry of Education, principals and vice-principals, for their support in implementing this project.

Akin-Jimoh explained that girls who were beneficiaries of the GOAL project were trained to go back to their communities to impact other girls on secure livelihood, sexual and reproductive rights, financial management and skills acquisition.

“One of the main objectives is to empower girls, the most vulnerable and hard-to-reach communities with skills to break the cycle of poverty, liberation from exploitation and abuse, to be self-reliant,’’ she said.

According to her, personal monitoring and evaluation are conducted to assess the performance of the girls as well as the project.

Also, Ms Tolulope Oshoba, Programme Manager, YEF, said: “I am happy about today’s event because we have been coaching them for almost a year.

“ Seeing them sit there answering those questions really makes me happy.

“It’s not only about the competition but seeing that young girls are beginning to take charge of their based on the teachings,’’ she said.

Ms Favour Idigo of the Standard Chartered said the bank committed to this programme.

“The girls we started with in 2010 are out of the universities starting their own business. So we are not ready to stop.

“The GOAL programme is targeted at girls from rural communities, those who don’t have opportunities to most of these things and the girls have been impressive.

“It is a continuous process; we will not give up but continue to partner NGOs like YEF and government bodies to educate parents and even communities, on the negative side of things and unacceptable cultures,’’ she said.

One of the participants, Anitufo Precious, a JSS2 student from the Onike Girls Junior High School, said that the programme had made her start spending wisely, a good influence on others and helped her make positive plans for future.

Also, Chiamaka Emmanuel, another beneficiary, said the opportunity had made her gain skills that she was using to make some earnings.

She said that with the money she got from the business she registered for JAMB, she has now been admitted to study at Abia State University.

Community Junior High School came first in the quiz, while Onike Girls and Ideal Girls Junior School came second and third respectively.