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Mother groups vital in improving girl’s education

Forum for African Women Educationalists Malawi (FAWEMA) has said mother group structures in schools are important in promoting girls’ education, fight against child marriages and teenage pregnancies.

FAWEMA Project Officer for Innovations in Health Rights and Development (iHEARD) for Ntchisi, Patrick Magalasi said this Monday during a training of 52 mother groups from 13 schools in Kayoyo and Boma education zones.

“Most girls drop out of school’s upper classes as compared to boys due to some factors such as cultural barriers which regard boys as superior to girls, Mother groups can explain the importance of education, support girls with school supplies and act as counsellor to girls on how to resist pressures and cultural practices which can make them to drop out” he said.

Magalasi said some girls face pressure from their own parents to quit school and the mother groups are there to offer support.

“The mother group play a critical key role in promoting personal hygiene amongst girls by teaching them how to care for themselves, including how to make re-usable sanitary pads out of simple and locally available materials,” he added.

Magalasi said through the iHEARD project FAWEMA organised the training for the mother groups aimed at orienting the committees on their roles and responsibilities, importance of girls and inclusive education and the concept of child friendly schools and legislations.

One of the participants from Sambakunsi School Mother group committee, Zione Chirwa said the training helped the mother groups to know their roles when counselling the learners in schools.

“For instance, we have been trained on how to counsel the learners by dividing them into age groups, including one on one counselling, this helps learners to open up and say the challenges they face, we learnt to work with other stakeholders such as chiefs, teachers when doing our work and mobilise resources to achieve our roles,” she said.

Chirwa hailed the iHEARD project saying it was helping girls to continue their education and not drop out of school.

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