Nourishing Our Youth

by | Dec 19, 2019 | Seeds: Our Blog

Do you remember the first time you were inspired as a child? Did you have people in your life to advocate for your health, education and overall wellbeing? As children, our self confidence and life perspective is highly impressionable. TPP grantees understand the need and value to equip youth with the tools and emotional support they need to explore the world through curious eyes, high self esteem and community driven goals.

These youth driven projects prove there is no limit to how we can engage our younger generations no matter how dire a situation may seem. We hope this ignites your deepest dreams and the desire to share them with others.

Youth Empowerment And Skill Development

The Youth Empowerment and Skill Development Project addresses the high level of poverty among young people in Malawi. This is attributed to a myriad of factors – including lack of employment and lack of skill development opportunities that can assist young people to become self-employed. Grantee Chimwemwe Kanyika shares, “We are motivated to carry out this project because it will contribute significantly to making the world just and long term goals that contribute to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by increasing job opportunities and income levels youth the youth.”


Richard Mfula, Patrick Kaputa – Access To Quality Early Education For All Children

Access to Quality Early Education for All Children, located in Nchelenge district of Luapula province of Zambia, supports quality educational opportunities for the most vulnerable children in remote areas. Managed by community volunteer teachers, this project will establish conducive learning classrooms to youth. Richard Mfula – the project leader – shares, “I was inspired by the overwhelming number of children in this community without access to early learning centers in the area since the government re-introduced early childhood education in all public schools which has not been implemented fully yet.” The grant funds will help purchase 100 pockets of cement to begin the construction of a classroom block for the children.


Brian Kimani, Kevin Kinuthia, Peter Maina – She Needs A Chance

She Needs a Chance is a project that gives opportunity to community schools in Nairobi to access libraries and links the students with mentors. Started by Brian Kimani and Kevin Kinuthia, they believe in providing opportunities to quality education to less privileged students from disadvantaged backgrounds who cannot afford to pay or buy books that are a requirement in their schools. In addition, students are linked with mentors through visits, which are outdoor events in order to see the other side of the world.


CARTER Center For K-12 Black History Edu – Teaching Black History Conference

Dr. LaGarrett King is the Founding Director of the CARTER Center for K-12 Black history education at the University of Missouri. Each year, the Center holds a Teaching Black history conference for educators from kindergarten through high school, alongside other professionals, to help improve Black history education. The conference seeks to engage and inspire teachers to go back to their schools and develop powerful Black history lessons that are critical, engaging, and relevant to the lives of their students.


Fritz Kwa Mendi And Esing Prudencia – Supporting Internally Displaced Children To Return To School

Project leads Fritz Kwa Mendi and Esing Prudencia have been feeling the frustrations of internally displaced parents in our community of Yaounde, Cameroon who were unable to send their children to school. “We felt helpless, but somehow galvanized to find solutions in our own little way. Today hundreds of these IDPs have smiles on their faces. May have been coming to us and we feel we are making an impact. With just a little push, we will reach more IDPs in need.”

Wariri Faith Mereh, Top Teens Nigeria – The Science Of Self Esteem By Top Teens Nigeria

The Science of Self-Esteem is a 2-Day educational bootcamp created by Top Teens Nigeria to address the issues of low self-esteem, teenage pregnancies, and access to STEM education among girls in Ughelli by helping girls build their self-worth. Due to societal pressure, many girls in this community grew up to subconsciously think they aren’t good compared to boys, and girls in this context seeks to validate their self-worth by engaging in unwholesome relationships. Additionally, girls in this context have an increased chance of dropping out of school, and low participation in STEM.

Having spent all her adolescent years in this community, Wariri Faith Mereh has a lived experience of the negative impact of the environment and gender stereotypes on young girls. This has led to issues such as Low self-esteem, teenage pregnancies, and absenteeism from school.

Furthermore, most of these girls who eventually stay in school do not go near STEM subjects because of the misconception that STEM is difficult and only boys have the capacity to succeed in this field.

The bootcamp will enable us provide mentorship for indigent girls from varying backgrounds, help empower them to have a mindset shift and see beyond their perceived inadequacies, believe in their abilities to become the best version of themselves, help them sharpen their STEM skills, sustain their passion and rediscover a sense of purpose. This will result in reduction of teenage pregnancies and increased participation in STEM.

“I believe that through our actions we can change the narrative of gender-related stereotypes and girls from marginalized backgrounds get educated because I know first-hand, the impact of education on women’s economic empowerment.”

The seed grant will be instrumental in funding various aspects of the program to ensure successful implementation.


Olabode Ekerin – The WiseUp Initiative “Safe Period” Project

The “Safe Period” Project is apart of The WiseUp Initiative, a non-governmental organization committed to increasing access to sexual and reproductive health information and services for all Nigerians. During the community and primary health care rotation in a rural community in Lagos, Nigeria, founder Olabode Ekerin discovered that a lot of women and girls are poor so cannot afford menstrual hygiene management products to keep them safe during their menstrual period. Most of them resort to using leaves, paper or even rags for their period, which is highly unhygienic.

Most of the girls also miss between 3 to 5 days of school each month because they cannot afford the menstrual hygiene management products needed to manage their period. This has had serious health and educational consequences like getting infected with various reproductive and urinary tract disease, falling behind in class, being held back or dropping out of school.

Some others resort to risky behaviors like transactional sex to pay for essential items like menstrual pad, which increases a girl’s vulnerability to premature sexual debut, early or unplanned pregnancy, child marriage and sexually transmitted infections including HIV/AIDS.
To solve this problem, his organization has launched the “Safe Period” Project, which is targeted at educating adolescent girls on menstrual hygiene management and how to make their own reusable pad. The grant from The Pollination Project will help to get all the necessary materials and equipment needed to support and train the girls.

Written by Milena Fraccari