NGO Advocating the Rights of Children (ARC) has announced a campaign for the empowerment of girls in partnership with the British High Commission in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The ‘GRACE’ campaign aims to help “Girls build Resilience, Aspirations, Capabilities and Empowerment, and equips them with the knowledge and skills necessary for further study and employment,” ARC said in a press release today.
“GRACE will also actively empower girls by building their confidence to navigate social, cultural, economic and gender barriers.”
ARC signed an agreement with the British High Commission today to formalise the partnership for a duration of eight months,
“Through this partnership, ARC aims to invest in girls through practical skills development sessions to increase their capacity to compete for scholarships and job opportunities, and to enter careers that are non-traditional and that involve decision-making roles,” the NGO explained.
“The project also includes a campaign-specific website, information sessions for parents, as well as a media campaign to raise awareness on the importance of the women’s empowerment.”
ARC expressed gratitude to the British High Commission “for their generous support and commitment to promoting the rights of children in the Maldives.”
“It is ARC’s hope that through projects such as the GRACE Campaign, gender stereotypes that exist in the Maldivian society can be reduced, and a foundation be laid for establishing a more conducive environment for women to make a bigger contribution to the national development of the country,” the press release stated.
ARC’s co-founder and executive director, Zenysha Shaheed Zaki, told Maldives Independent that the partnership will help the NGO reach remote islands.
“This campaign helps us overcome one the biggest challenges we face in all our campaigns – reaching the islands far from the capital. So this year we are also carry out the GRACE campaign in Haa Alif atoll, Addu atoll, Fuvahmulah and Dhaalu atoll as well,” she said.
Zenysha said the GRACE campaign will focus on children aged 15 to 18 years. Boys will also be involved in the activities as they can play an important role in empowering women, she added.
ARC hopes to achieve the goals of the campaign by raising awareness among girls about how to prepare and apply for job interviews and scholarships, she continued, while also helping young women understand how to develop their CVs as well as the role of paid and unpaid internships in career development.
The sessions will be held in schools and focus on groups the size of a normal class.
The campaign includes a website, information sessions for parents, and raising awareness through the media on the importance of empowering women.