Refugee Girls Wellbeing Club in Africa ELI, Uganda: Promotion of Positive Wellbeing, Resilience, Youth Leadership Skills, and Dropout Prevention through Cross-cultural Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR)

Amy Bintliff (she/her)
Professor, Department of Education Studies, University of California-San Diego

Co-Presenters:
Beinomugisha Peninah, Professor, Kampala University

Zaharah Namanda, Nonprofit Director, Africa Education and Leadership Initiative

Rebecca Levine, Doctoral Student, University of California San Diego

Patrick Kanyeihamba, Development Specialist, Africa Education and Leadership Initiative

Norah Nalutaaya, Educator/Board Member, Africa Education and Leadership Initiative

Abstract: 

The impact of COVID-19 has been very detrimental to the wellbeing of refugee girls in Uganda (UNHCR, 2020). 27% of girls have been denied access to digital basic education due to their participation in household chores, and increased school fees (UNHCR, 2020). Many girls were forcefully married off for bride wealth to enhance their family income (UNHCR, 2020). Additionally, at the onset of COVID-19, there was great concern for girls demonstrating emotional depression, anxiety, and a higher risk of teen pregnancy.

However, through a collaborative initiative between Africa Education Leadership Initiative (Africa ELI) and the University of California, San Diego, Department of Education Studies, two pilot Wellbeing Clubs have been locally implemented in Uganda to support the wellbeing of girls. Our pilot assessment demonstrates that the wellbeing curriculum and pedagogy, including youth-led activism, improves participants’ abilities to relate with peers, builds self-confidence, communication skills, problem-solving skills, and decision making abilities, and stimulates the desire for girls to remain in school.

1 thought on “Refugee Girls Wellbeing Club in Africa ELI, Uganda: Promotion of Positive Wellbeing, Resilience, Youth Leadership Skills, and Dropout Prevention through Cross-cultural Community Based Participatory Research (CBPR)”

  1. This is a wonderful project and team. I am so amazes at how the well-being model is developing so well with colleagues in Uganda. Congratulations to Dr. Bintlff and team.

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