Chikwawa single mothers form back to school initiative

Chikwawa: Single mothers in Chikwawa have formed an initiative called ‘Go Girls’ which aims at empowering the mothers to either go back to school or engage economic enterprises to mitigate the effects of growing poverty levels in the district.

In an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana) Friday, Chairperson for the ‘Go Girls’ Campaign, Maria Betala said through the initiative, they intend to inspire single mothers most of whom stay idle to go back to school or engage in various small-scale businesses such as the Village Savings and Loans (VSLs).

She pointed out single mothers came up with the idea following the challenges they face once they are abandoned or divorced by their husbands leaving them destitute with children and other responsibilities to take care of.

”I was impregnated when I was in Standard 7 and I dropped out of school. Following the challenges, I faced, I thought of going back to school and now I am in a secondary school at Chikwawa night secondary school, Betala stated.

She added that the challenges made her associate with several single mothers around Chikwawa and formed the initiative in which they share ideas concerning their future and also encouraging one another to avoid being impregnated again by some irresponsible men.

”We know that a lot of girls make mistakes not intentionally but rather out of poverty and desperation. A lot of girls live in poverty and the situation makes some crooked men to take advantage of the girls’ vulnerability,” the chairperson explained.

Betala disclosed that the initiative has so far registered over 40 girls, 25 of whom have since gone back to school while others are embarking on entrepreneurial activities through money lending groups.

She said the initiative would also ensure that all issues that negatively affect the single mothers in the district were addressed.

”We need to be united and encourage one another so that every single mother should have a chance to go back to school or engage in various small scale businesses. We will approach other single mothers across the district so that they are able to go back to school,” Betala observed.

She pleaded for support from other well-wishers to support the initiative by paying fees for other members lacking that kind of support as well as boost their financial base in some of their entrepreneurial activities.

”We would like to plead with government and other non-governmental organisations to give us the kind of support they can manage which can likely help us prepare the future that is ahead of us, Betala viewed.

Right now we are partially assisted by Development Initiative Network (DIN) Malawi, but we still need more resources in order to reach out to more single mothers, she added.

The Go Girls initiative comprises of two clubs of Tikondane Go Girls Club and Limbikani Go Girls Club both from the area of Traditional Authority (TA) Mulilima in the district.

Source: Malawi News Agency MANA