In today’s era, development in its true sense, whether personal, social or national, cannot happen without education; education is the basic building block for all human progress. We therefore, cannot discuss gender equality in Sierra Leone, without discussing girls’ education because it is the very basic foundation for women to become full participants in the social and economic wellbeing of our society.
The benefits of education for girls are immeasurable, among which knowledge about their human rights and the inherent empowerment this knowledge creates in women’s ability to fight for those rights is of paramount importance. The gender inequality in the social structure of Sierra Leone stems from the breakdown at this very basic foundational level; the inequality in education between boys and girls for ages has created inequality for girls and women at all levels of society.
Who can fix this broken foundation? This is not for the faint of heart, so it is going to require enormous expertise and the only people who posses this expertise are the women of Sierra Leone; with the support of our brothers and others, but we must lead the way because we have what no body else has, the lived experience of being born and raised as girls and women in Sierra Leone, regardless of which side of the street you grew up.
Sadly though, the fixing of this foundation has not been taking place because of a great many dividing lines between the women of Sierra Leone, until these lines are blurred, the foundation continues to crumble.
In our next post, we will discuss these dividing lines.