Sponsorship-Adolescent Development Prepares Estelle towards her Growth
Estelle discovered something about herself after joining Save the Children’s, Adolescent Development (AD) programme early last year – she realised that she was becoming an adolescent girl. When she is not playing a game of netball with her friends or doing chores at home like most girls in her community, she spends a lot of time at the AD programme. In her school group, she holds the position of chairperson, which mainly puts her in charge of organising members.
Adolescent Development started in 2012, it is one of the core programmes under the Sponsorship Programme in Malawi. It is being implemented in Traditional Authority (TA) Chikowi, Zomba district. The programme aims at positively contributing to the wellbeing of adolescents aged between 10 and 18 and to the betterment of society through the use of health, education and economic opportunities.
Before joining, Estelle did not know much about what she was about to go through – puberty. With Adolescent and Reproductive Sexual Health (ARSH) being one of the programme’s key areas, Save the Children has been handing puberty books to youth in the programme, which went a long way for Estelle – as she was about to discover. There was a strikingly similar story in her book that helped her with a situation she went through during school, when she suddenly realised that she had hit puberty.
“When I realised what was happening to me, it made me think about a story on a girl named Faith in my puberty book from the program. It reminded me of what to do at the time,” said Estelle. She feels that since joining this programme she has been well informed about teenage development in way that’s helping her apply her newfound knowledge in a practical way.
Estelle strongly believes that Save the Children helps students develop. “I have seen that, through the organisation’s involvement in schools, teachers take even more of an interest in our education,” said Estelle. She is indeed correct, the Sponsorship Programme places strong emphasis on teacher and volunteer training in the communities it serves.
With better-equipped teachers and facilitators to help students, it brings about a positive outcome on how students are taught as results have shown at Save the Children. It is with this same desired response that the Adolescent Development programme aspires to positively contribute towards children like 14-year-old Estelle. Like the programme, she too wants to give back to society once she achieves her dream of one day becoming a nurse.
Written by Luzayo Nyirongo, Strategic Communications Coordinator