FAWE/UNICEF Launch Girls’ Magazine

The Inquirer
Monrovia, Liberia

Distributed by

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia

Posted May 25, 2004

The Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE), in collaboration with UNICEF, has for the first time in Liberia, launched a Girls’ Voices Magazine project; as Morrison O.G. Sayon reports.

The magazine which was launched over the weekend at the Gender and Development Ministry is expected to highlight the plight of Liberian women and their activities especially disadvantaged girls, some of whom were victimized as a result of the 14 years of civil conflict in the country.

Serving as chief launcher, Monrovia City Mayor Ophelia-Hoff Saytumah said, due to the high rate of poverty in the country, girl children are being used by parents to be bread-winners for their respective homes.

Mrs. Saytumah noted that Liberian girls have suffered enough, something that has deprived several of them the opportunity to acquire sound education, stressing “don’t allow your parents to send you out for money, remember that AIDs is real and may kill you if you don’t take care of yourselves and become resourceful.

“If your parents continue to use you as bread-winners for the home rather than send you to school, you can sue them because it is your constitutional right to be catered to by your parents,” Mrs. Saytumah told the girls.

For her part, former Chief Justice of Liberia, Cllr. Gloria M. Scott questioned the role of mothers who have failed to resume their responsibilities toward their children; iterating that the name “Mother” needs a new definition. She said women who bring forth leaders have allowed their children to be exploited by men for little dime.

She then challenged the Liberian girls to be serious with their education and do away with the love of material things which will last for a little while.

Making remarks, FAWE’s Executive Director Comfort Bedell-Marshall admonished the girls to make education their major priority and fight to reach where some of their parents could not reach. She said FAWE’s magazine will deal with girls’ activities which include writing and explaining their ordeals, among others.

Among FAWE’s goals are to increase access and retention as well as improve the quality of education for all girls within the school system and women in universities. FAWE News is to be published quarterly to report on the education of girls and women across Africa.

© 2004: This article is copyrighted by The Inquirer newspaper (Monrovia, Liberia) and distributed by The Perspective (Atlanta, Georgia). All rights reserved.