Millicent is 17 years old and from a small community called Masongbo Limba in the Bombali District of Sierra Leone. Her mother is a tradeswoman and her father is a miner.
She dreams of being a nurse and a leader.
I want to ensure I become one of the most influential leaders in school, no matter the amount of years it takes.Millicent
However, community norms and traditions are holding her back from accessing the same opportunities as her male peers, in both her community, and at school. This is not just happening in Milicent’s village but across Sierra Leone with damaging long term consequences for both gender equality and development.
According to Manso, a teacher at her school, the majority of girls are afraid of contesting leadership positions, because they lack confidence and leadership skills.
Forty young volunteers led a project to support in- and out-of-school girls to respond to sexual violence, develop their entrepreneurship skills and get back into and thrive in school. They run a range of activities from giving school assemblies and running girls clubs to business training and one-on-one mentoring.
A year after community engagement began in Masongbo Limba, Milicent is thriving.
Newly elected as head girl, she is taking the lead role in organizing and conducting assemblies, working with 9 other girls to share in her leadership. She is also involved in important school meetings where she shares issues that girls are facing in her school.
My vision has come to pass. I believe we (girls) can do anything with enough focus and practice.Millicent
Millicent is one of 8,636 in and out of school girls who have been engaged and supported to excel by our brilliant volunteers working on this life-changing project in Sierra Leone.