When a girl drops out of secondary school, her life changes radically. Her education ends; her livelihood prospects diminish; she becomes more vulnerable to poverty, exclusion, and exploitation; and her physical and mental health often suffer. If she has dropped out because of pregnancy, her challenges are compounded by the need to care for her young child. Even if she wants to, it is near impossible to successfully return to schooling as most of the causes that led to her dropping out have not changed.
Assisting such girls to pursue alternative learning and growth pathways has a significant impact on their lives — and those of their babies and families. Through the mechanism of Out-of-School Support Groups (OSSGs), World Education Bantwana’s Waache Wasome project has empowered adolescent girls and young women, helping reignite their hopes and dreams. Group members are equipped with social capital and life skills as well as practical competencies and business and vocational skills that set them on a path to economic independence.
Meet three young women who have made the journey from school dropouts to independent entrepreneurs with Bantwana’s support.