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Sunday, 19 August 2018 16:54

YONECO, MAGGA promoting young women rights - Christian Aid

Written by  Yamikani Yapuwa
G G Girls like these targeted for protection - File Photo

Blantyre, August 16, 2018: Christian Aid has hailed Comprehensive Action for Adolescent Girls and Young Women Project being implemented by Youth Net and Counselling (YONECO) and Malawi Girls Guides Association (MAGGA) for promoting human rights of adolescent girls and young women in Mulanje.

Christian Aid Chief Executive Officer, Amanda Khozi Mukwashe, expressed her gratitude Tuesday in the district, saying with such kind of projects, Malawi can position itself as a country that is really concerned and committed to the plight of the girl child.

“When you think of Malawi in terms of early child marriages and the increase of HIV/AIDS among the adolescent groups, this project is doing very well.

“The stories that we have heard are not stories of poverty or stories of people who have no solutions but rather stories of young girls who understand their basic human rights, who understand the responsibilities and duties of those who are supposed to look for them like teachers and parents,” said Mukwashe.

Mukwashe said that through the project, young girls in Mulanje now know that they can become much more of anything if they are given the right environment, right support to get educated, to protect themselves against HIV transmission and to be able to achieve economic independence.

“Africa is rich, not only in terms of material resources, but our people have character and intellect. We just have to make it in nurturing young people for them to be great leaders of tomorrow,” added Mukwashe.

Youth Net and Counselling (YONECO) Executive Director, McBain Mkandawire attributed the success of the project in Mulanje to the collaborated efforts by all stakeholders in the district who have played their roles effectively.

“What is very unique with Mulanje in this response is the collaboration that we have had with traditional leaders in the area of Senior Chief Chikumbu, and various stakeholders looking into the issue of adolescent girls and young women. Everyone is realising that we need to do something to change the status quo for the girls.

“We have seen that there are a lot of reports on gender-based violence and mitigation of the same. There is a lot of protection being offered by the teachers, a lot of support from police and other stakeholders,” he added.

Malawi Girl Guide Association (MAGGA) National Coordinator Mphatso Baluwa Jim said through the project, they have been teaching school- going girls in Mulanje on HIV and AIDS transmission and prevention as well as Gender Based Violence.

“MAGGA targets girls that are in school, giving them information on HIV and AIDS as well as teaching the girls on Gender Based Violence so that they should be able to know when violence occurs.

“We also orient the girls on the teacher’s code of conduct and ethics so that they know when a wrong thing happens and actually report when it happens whether in school or at home,” said Jim.

The Comprehensive Action for Adolescent Girls and Young Women project is being implemented with funding from Christian Aid.

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