Girls Empowerment Network (GENET) is currently engaged in bringing back to school school dropout youth in its ongoing project which is taking place in 35 schools in the area of Traditional Authority Chakhaza in Dowa district.
Speaking in an interview with the Malawi News Agency (Mana) on Tuesday in Dowa, GENET programs officer, Twambilile Kayuni said their organization thought it wise to engage in the initiative after noticing the high rate of school drop outs in the area and the efforts the community is making to curb the challenge.
“As GENET we noticed high numbers of youth who dropped out of school due to different reasons and we were also impressed with the organized endeavors by the community members to fight against the issue.
“Among other things we also observed the community members taking part in ending child marriages and bringing the children back to school and this motivated us to take action and support the community members to eradicate the vice,” said Kayuni.
She said in the district many youth drop out of school due to early marriages and lack of parental assistance in providing every day school basic needs such us uniforms, note books and sanitary materials for girls.
Kayuni therefore said their organization is supporting the community members by holding sensitization campaigns in which they preach to the youth on the dangers of early marriages and teaching the community members on the ways of sourcing out everyday school basic needs for learners.
She said they are working with chiefs who are mobilizing the designated community members and Parent Teachers Association (PTA) members to go door to door looking for the young children who do not go to school.
According to Kayuni through the initiative which they are doing they have managed to bring back to school more young children who dropped out of school in Dowa area.
“There is a huge change with the coming in of the initiative which we are doing here in Dowa whereby the enrollment rate of learners who dropped out school and are returning to school has increased.
“For T/A Chakhaza only we have managed to brought 237 learners who dropped out from school back to school and for us we are jubilating as this as a great achievement towards our project plans,” she explained.
PTA Chairperson at Chimpeni Primary School in Dowa district, Joel Manda told Mana that through being empowered by GENET, he wakes up at 4 O’clock in the morning and starts awaking children door to door to get prepared for school.
The project is being funded by COMIC Relief in partnership with OXFAM Malawi.