In Malawi, World Renew works with Word Alive Commission on Relief and Development to reach out to girls (age 14-21) who, due to desperate circumstances, are engaged in transactional sex.
This project, begun in 2015, introduces girls to peer mentors, our Stepping Stones Training (which includes life skills education and risk perception), and connects the girls to key messages around the risks of transactional sex. Some of the girls become peer mentors themselves, as you will see in this story by Faye Yu, World Renew program consultant in Malawi.
Some of the girls continue to be vulnerable, especially during times of drought. Because some of them are the primary breadwinners for their families, they cannot stop engaging in transactional sex because they need to buy food when there is no harvest available. Teaching technical business, and entrepreneurship skills means that girls are empowered to make a living in safe and healthy ways, even in times of crisis. In fact, in Tanzania, where World Renew is working with Asasi Ya Chagua Maisha (which means Organization for Choose Life) in three communities outside of Dar es Salaam to transition girls and young women from sex work to safe income generating activities, there is a girls group called "Nguvumpya," which means "New Power." This group of fifteen members - after receiving entrepreneurship skills training - registered with the local government, wrote a proposal to the municipality, and received funding equivalent to US$1,163 to start a chicken-raising project. They now have 150 chickens and have saved $372!
World Renew is investing in skills training and education for girls and livelihood activities for young women in more than fifteen countries, including Bangladesh, Cambodia, Guatemala, Haiti, Hondurasa, India, Kenya, Laos, Malawi, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia.