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Come on Girls, WAKE UP!

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Why are girls this way? Why are they hesitant, indecisive and frustrating to employers? You see a very intelligent girl with prospects in science, give her an opportunity and she suddenly puts her brakes. Are girls less smart than boys when it comes to spotting and running with opportunities?

Our  Environment Monitoring trainings admit Senior Six leavers, university students and fresh graduates, who we train in research analysis, impact assessment, report writing and presentation of environment related data. With the growing number of development partners striving to contribute to Uganda’s Vision 2040 Environmental Targets, we commission our young people to the field to work with key players in developing sustainable environment friendly solutions. These young people are offered internship placements to participate in research. Since our partners have projects nationwide, it's likely that a few will end up in Karamoja, Ntungamo, Jinja, Kasese or even on the Kalangala island.

The thing that we find interesting is that the boys will gladly roll up their sleeves and  take up the opportunities. The girls... You have to deal with their parents’ calls as soon as they are allocated placement. Where will they sleep? What will they eat? How safe is the place? How well do you know their supervisor? By the time a girl eventually goes for research, you have had their parents hovering over you, with mistrust so sudden. Which employer has time for that trouble?

Why then would employers choose girls over boys? How are we going to attain the equality we so advocate for, if girls are afraid of seemingly challenging tasks? Some girls are gifted to understand scientific concepts impressively fast and have potential to excel. This requires them to be out of their comfort zones. Once they give themselves a chance, they actually enjoy the adventure.

Parents (especially mothers) should have the courage to let their daughters soar. Boys are raised to take charge of their own affairs. So should girls. Do not let your child go through life without having achieved their potential because you were clucking over them.

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Linda Mwesigwa
Communications & Partnerships Coordinator,
STEPUP Standard Limited

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