Discover Your Potential – ABCD Girls Conference

On Feb. 19 and 20 at Makomu Secondary School, a conference for girls called Discover Your Potential was organized and hosted by ABCD Tanzania and funded by ABCD Canada. 30 girls attended from age 13-21. Over half of the girls were ABCD girls and the others were invited from various schools in Marangu West.

The theme of the conference was ‘leadership’, and there were workshops presented by 3 amazing facilitators. Edith Tarimo is a respected Tanzanian educator and she presented an animated and lively talk about the meaning of leadership and the characteristics of a good leader.

ABCD Director Terry Maynard delivered two unique presentations in which the girls were challenged to explore their own skills and aptitudes towards choosing their own career paths, utilizing a medicine circle village of attributes concept.

Susan Shoo, is young Tanzanian woman with a degree in community economic development who is presently managing a popular coffee shop in Moshi and running 3 other successful businesses. She presented her own story in trying to find a career in her field while in the meantime becoming a successful entrepreneur. She was a meaningful role model for the girls.

The girls were fully engaged and paid rapt attention to these three speakers. At first they focussed on taking many notes as is the learning style in Tanzanian schools, but with some encouragement to put down their pens and they were encouraged to listen, interact and question, the learning atmosphere transformed with lively energy.

Part of the conference also involved a lot of fun and games led by ABCD volunteers Christine and Edwina, such as ‘fill the mat’, ‘simon says’, jumping rope (Frank joined in!), dodge ball, and…this must be the first time the girls had ever practiced yoga! So much laughter and fun!

Many thanks to Headmaster Kaniki, for providing the convenient location and the delicious lunches and tea breaks.

On closing the girls all received a Certificate of Completion. This conference exceeded all of our our expectations and we hope it inspired the girls to realize their own worth and to reach for their dreams.