As part of Gulu Women’s Resource Centre’s goal of providing women with current and critical information, community meeting space, computer and life skill trainings, WGEF offered a 3 months’ basic computer training for 27 young girls and women to help them learn and improve their knowledge and skills in basic computer applications. The training drew participants from primary schools, secondary schools drop outs. It is through information and education that self esteem and empowerment is facilitated, enabling women to stand up and lead themselves out of the vicious cycle of poverty that is often presented before them.
Young women are such a powerful resource to the community of Gulu and inspire us daily as they work tirelessly towards a bright future. Regardless of their backgrounds, health status, and heartbreak, they have big dreams to change their lives and community. This is where WGEF’s contribution and support is critical to provide them with tools to enable them realize their potentials
“On my graduation today I feel powerful and inspired because me 4 of us we are already been employed, the missing gap was the lack of computer skills which has been filled up the training provided to us. Gulu Women’s Resource Center is the bridge that is connecting all women young and old with meaningful resources and it is facilitating change in community” we are so blessed to have the Center in Gulu. Thank you WGEF for the Opportunity” – Nancy
“The fighting in our home country separated me from my family, I don’t know if they are still alive, I was left alone with no one to tell my challenges, no one to take care of my needs such as sanitary pads I have to use a piece of cloth, but also cleaning it is a challenge because we don’t have enough water and soap in this camp” – Christine, 14 years old.
Sadly 70% of mothers in Bolore and Pagirinya refugee settlements think periods are dirty and 66% of girls and women manage periods without toilets. Having your period in a refugee settlement is uncomfortable, unsanitary and unjust PERIOD! Influenced by differences in sociocultural norms, without education for young girls on how to manage their periods, whether and from whom they can seek reliable information and help.
When a girl faces obstacles in managing her menses in a healthy way, she is at risk for infection, her self-esteem and self-confidence suffer, she may remain absent from school during her period, or worse still, drop out of school altogether upon reaching puberty. Over time, these negative effects add up, preventing a young girl from achieving her full potential and having a healthy, productive life. It’s about justice.
WGEF is responding to this crisis by supplying Lucky Girls Sanitary Pads to young girls and women in Bolore and Pagirinya refugee settlements. These 2 settlements host 36,000 people of which 72% are young girls, women and children between 9 to 18 years.
This month WGEF has provided 300 young girls and women with Lucky Girl Sanitary Pads, and critical information on menstrual health; our goal is to deliver 7000 pads every month to women and girls living in the camps.
WGEF disbursed 350 new micro loans to to support women in Omoro District who are looking up to better their lives, start and expand their business. All women were provided intensive business skills and provided with micro loans to help them start and expand their business. Each woman represented a household we need to see improvement in house hold income, children able to go to school and families Table access quality health care services.
“I feel like I matter, from today instead of focusing on just survival, being given the opportunity to access credit for the first time then I have a new beginning and confidence begin to looking for ways to thrive in my life” – Jennifer, Omoro District
WGEF Credit Plus participants receive a microcredit loan bundled with social and educational services, allowing them to create an opportunity for sustainability, increased food security and health and nutrition. Each loan recipient is required to attend bi-monthly meetings. These meetings will entail loan repayment and training on business skills, literacy, health or leadership development. Women invests their micro loans in varied business such as produce selling, baking, tailoring and knitting, grocery store, poultry and agro loans. All these loans help women and their house holds become more resilient and better able to provide for their families in times of economic difficulty.
“When I received my first loans of $100 from WGEF last I dedicated myself to use the opportunity to change mile life and support my family better. Now all my children are going to school and I have bought 2 cows. Most important I feel less stressed now. Thank you WGEF for trusting me.” – Hellen, Koro District