Today in the PEAS office we are celebrating International Women’s Day. In Uganda the national average for female pupils in secondary school is 21% which clearly demonstrates a gender inequality in schools. One of our strategic visions is to have at least 50% of places in our schools reserved and taken up by girls.
To mark the occasion we are blogging with two stories from Zaharah and Aska, two girls who have felt the impact of a quality, affordable secondary education in Uganda and Zambia:
Zaharah is a student at Onwards and Upwards secondary school in Uganda and comes from a village called Nabukalu, an hours motor bike ride away form the school. Zaharah is a boarding student which eliminates the dangers she faced on the long journey to school before she started boarding. “Previously when I was a day student, I got worried about being bothered by men on the way to school. I am very worried about becoming pregnant because I believe that my studies are the most important thing I have and I want to complete my education.”
Zaharah’s favourite subject at school is learning to speak English. She told us that she loves to find out about new things generally and hopes that her education will enable her to get a good job in the end. She would love to become a nurse or a doctor because she would like to make people feel better. “I want to learn so that I can get a job in the future and I believe this will give me freedom and will mean I can help my Father to support the education of my siblings.”
Aska is a student from George Secondary School in Zambia. Aska enjoys studying and wants to become an accountant as she enjoys maths. Aska attends George secondary school because of its close location to her home. “I would have gone to Kansenshi High School, but my parents would not have been able to manage the fees and the transport costs because it is far. Here we can just walk.
Many children face the school day without food but at George Secondary School lunch is provided which for many is the only meal of the day. Aska feels that “The best thing about the school is that we get given lunch and we don’t have to pay extra for it”
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