“Just one girl sponsored is one more opportunity for a better future, one more chance to give a teenager the strength, courage and advice to get a good education and make a difference in the world.” Nonkululeko Sindane, CEO _____
The seeds for Mariswe’s NURTURE A GIRL initiative were sown in 2017 out of CEO Nonkulukelo Sindane’s passion to support teenage girls in a society where young women have little voice, live with abuse and violence, and struggle to find their way into fulfilling careers.
NURTURE A GIRL’s slogan is “Change a life” and that’s what the initiative aims to do. Mariswe initially sponsored 50 female learners from Grades 8 to 12 at three mainstream secondary schools in Cape Town, Pretoria and King Williams Town, as well as a special needs school in Tembisa. Each of the beneficiaries receives monthly personal hygiene kits and exposure to life skills and career opportunities through workshops and courses, career advice and counselling.
Mariswe has extended an invitation to others to come on board and help expand the programme and staff at the firm are sponsoring some of the girls in their individual capacities.
The initiative has swelled to well over 70 beneficiaries at times and those who matriculate and leave the programme are replaced by other learners selected by their teachers. The more sponsorships received, the more young women can benefit from this life-changing programme.
Several programmes and activities were arranged as part of the initiative in 2018. Learners completed two-day SANCA Peer Education and Training Courses on substance abuse and were given the opportunity to attend depression and anxiety workshops.
All the schools received book donations and Mariswe has partnered with the Schools Reading Roadshow Team to introduce the NURTURE A GIRL learners to the work of local authors. Stationery donations kept the beneficiaries kitted out with the essentials for the year and Mariswe staff got the girls involved in planting fruit trees at their schools on Arbour Day.
Beneficiaries were invited to join Mariswe’s annual CESA Job Shadow Days and various classes including computer skills, arts and crafts, cooking and knitting were offered to the learners over the year.
Particular focus is also being placed on support with maths and other technical subjects.
The beneficiaries will also have responsibilities to fulfill, including attending school and passing all subjects. Their parents and other caregivers will form an integral part of the NURTURE A GIRL initiative.
“We will be inviting companies with whom we do business to come on board and help us expand the programme,” says Nonkululeko. “Just one girl sponsored is one more opportunity for a better future, one more chance to give a teenager the strength, courage and advice to get a good education and make a difference in the world.”
You will be able to meet all the NURTURE A GIRL beneficiaries on the Mariswe website soon. May their stories inspire you to Change a life.
If you cannot sponsor a girl, please consider making a donation below. Every little bit makes a difference.