Through the CAMFED alumni association—CAMA, beneficiaries of the organisation have been using acquired education to benefit other young girls in rural communities to overcome poverty.
Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, Principal Education Officer, Naomi Swai made the remarks in Dar es Salaam on Wednesday when speaking at the 13th CAMA annual general meeting under the theme—‘Young women-a new force for sustainable development’.
The conference was held in line with the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence marked globally from November 25th to December 10th.
According to Swai the good work by CAMA supplements government efforts towards improving provision of education as the country gears to become an industrialised middle-income sized nation by 2025.
“We recommend the good job you are doing to empower girls living in difficult conditions. In five years you have supported 134,055 students from both primary and secondary schools”, said Swai adding that young women alumni network boost the government’s implementation of the 2016/2017-2020/2021 development plan.
She said CAMFED has been providing support in improvement of school learning infrastructures which include construction of classrooms, pit latrines, laboratories, dormitories, water wells, libraries and teachers houses.
CAMA National chairman, Mwanahamisi Boraafya said they have been supporting girls in their schools by providing them with life and learning skills, health and wellbeing education. She said they also implement the ‘transition guide programme’ for secondary school leavers to help them stay safe as they prepare to enter into adulthood.
“Since we benefitted from CAMFED, we decided to give back to the community by volunteering to share knowledge and skills with our fellows in rural communities. We also engage in entrepreneurship and produce various products which are sold to raise funds which are in-turn used to support rural girls with materials they need to stay in school,” said Boraafya.
She said under the new strategic plan to be implemented in the coming five years, CAMA plans to reach one million marginalised girls.
She said the alumni network has a total of 22,665 members but plans are to increase the number to 26,648 in 2020. She said the organisation operates in 32 districts in nine regions namely, Dar es Salaam, Iringa, Tanga, Tabora, Pwani, Singida, Mwanza, Shinyanga and Morogoro.
CAMFED Director, Lydia Wilbard noted that the organisation has also been working to promote human rights and specifically girls’ rights. She said since they work to ensure the wellbeing of girls in rural communities, the conference was organised to take place with the marking of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence.
CAMFED was launched in Tanzania in 2005, working with the government to boost secondary school enrolment. It started working in Iringa region before spreading to eight other regions across the country. It works with 819 partner schools in 32 districts.
It has also supported more than 3.3 million children to go to school in Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Ghana and Malawi.