Tomorrow’s Stars provides scholarships, libraries, and other support for students in Elmina, Ghana who face significant barriers to completing their education. To augment classroom learning with lessons on life skills, volunteer Sue Ron Gonzalez helped form a girls club in the rural farming village Abrem Essiam. After searching for practical and empowering information to share with the girls, she finally found Health Actions for Women at a gathering in San Francisco with Sarah Shannon, Hesperian’s Executive Director.
One strategy of Tomorrow’s Stars is to ask former scholarship recipients to lead activities as a way to “pay it forward” once they graduate. One “pay it forward” student gave a lesson on gender and equity based on Health Actions for Women. The kids role-played a scene where a girl was teased at school and the teacher never called on her. Then they re-played the scene to explore how she could have been empowered to speak up in class. Rudolph, the pay it forward student leading the lesson, made a poster that all of the male teachers signed pledging not to use violence towards women or stand by in silence. Afterwards, they displayed the poster in the school.
The dozens of adaptable activities and stories in Health Actions for Women can be replicated in any community to teach about equity and empowerment. Integrate them into your lesson plans, or let them inspire you to create something new. For suggestions on classroom use, check out our new Teaching Guide to accompany Health Actions for Women. This dynamic guide includes thought-provoking questions to consider as a group, and is a helpful addition for anyone considering using Health Actions for Women in a classroom. Available free with purchase of the book, or for just $0.99 on its own.