#National News

Mothers clubs, others sensitised on STEM

Mar 20, 2023, 12:51 PM | Article By: Mustapha S. Koli in LRR

As part of efforts to promote gender equality, women empowerment and skills development, the Gender Education Unit under The Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education (MoBSE) with funding from UNESCO-NATCOM recently sensitised mothers' clubs and adolescence girls drawn from various senior secondary schoolsin Lower River Region on the “Popularization of STEM and Digital Skills Education and Sexual and Gender Based Violence Training.”

Isatou Jallow, head of Gender Unit at the Ministry of Basic and Secondary Education said Sexual and Gender Based Violence has negative effects on the progress and holistic development of school children particularly the girl child.

She added that it is not only imperative to raise the awareness of the masses on Sexual and Gender Based Violence and also create platforms for experience sharing but also enhance reporting and management of Sexual Harassment cases in schools.

She added that the emergence of digital technology has compounded the vulnerability of girls in both school and community environments, and requires them to be provided with vital information relating to sexual harassment, as well as create reporting platforms to address impunity and promote litigations.

She highlighted that, the enrolment, retention and completion rates of girls at basic education levels are 82%. She noted that out of this, a small number of girls specialise in Mathematics and Science related areas.

She challenged parents and caregivers to support girls in their career development and training endeavors to become productive members of society.

Deputising for the Regional Education Director, Ebrima Jatta, Senior Education Officer said future leaders’ issues affecting the education and wellbeing of children needs urgent attention. He challenged participants to report cases of sexual harassment and all other forms of violence perpetrated on them for timely and lasting solutions.

Ajaratou Kumba Joof, in her statement warned parents against the withdrawal of girls from school for the purpose of marriage. She described the act as a violation of their rights and welfare that also compromises their health and psycho-social wellbeing.

Mustapha Drammeh, from MoBSE Gender Unit of the Ministry described girls’ education as a critical pillar and a driving force towards the attainment of Gender Equality and National Development.

He advised participants to take the messages seriously and serve as goodwill ambassadors to schools they represented.