Sisters for Sister’s Education
It is widely recognized that improving access to, and quality of, girls’ education brings about positive socio-economic outcomes, for example improving health, diversifying and sustaining livelihoods and promoting economic growth. 55% of Nepal’s population are affected by ‘extreme poverty’, and girls and women, especially in rural areas, are disproportionately affected. The Government’s School Sector Reform Plan 2009-15 (SSRP) firmly asserts the importance of girls’ education, but the project’s 2 target districts, highlighted by the Ministry of Education, show a negative trend in retention of girls in education and female literacy is below the national average at 39.9%. Girls’ education is further affected by a number of issues, including low parental literacy and low value placed on girls’ education, shortage of female teachers, lack of gender-sensitive teaching methodologies and practices, attitudes towards menstruation and access to sanitary facilities and harassment on the way to school and in the classroom. There is therefore an urgent need to support the implementation of the SSRP, whilst working closely with communities to raise awareness of the value of girls’ education.
To set out the economic and social benefits of investing in girls’ education, to which this project will contribute, ultimately including economic growth, reduced poverty, reductions in under-5 and maternal mortality and many other social and environmental benefits
Parsa and Dhading districts
640 of the most marginalized girls, or ‘Little Sisters’,will be provided with academic and emotional support by 160 ‘Big Sisters’, who will mentor the girls through their schooling and act as positive role models and advocates for girls’ education.
9-month “Bridge Courses” (preparatory classes and school support) will be provided to 240 girls and boys who have never been to school or who dropped out in Grade 1.
48 male and female ‘adult champions’ from the local community will act as mentors to Big Sisters, whilst facilitating negotiations with parents, and adding credibility to the scheme through their ability to communicate at all levels within the community.