GUESS WHO'S COMING TO NEW YORK! Girl Pioneer Milsa got her US visa ON HER FIRST TRY!!! This is a huge deal. She will be traveling to New York City in late July to represent She's the First scholars in Guatemala at the annual She's the First Summit. Then, she will spend a week participating in The Youth Assembly at the United Nations! We are so proud of you Milsa! Thank you for your support She's the First, The Youth Assembly at the United Nations, and Dining for Women! #HappyFriday to all! ... See more
Last week, Starfish Impact School students took their mid-year Lexile exams. If you remember, students took these tests at the start of the school year to gauge their reading comprehension levels. Now we're looking to see what sort of progress our students have made! Here, our Monitoring and Evaluation Coordinator Ana Lucia helps students use tablets to take the exams. It'll be interesting to track these results as our bookworm students keep adding to their reading lists! 📕🐛🙌 ... See more
Our #WCW: "Although education in Afghanistan continues to improve, only 23 percent of Afghan women are literate, and over 600,000 school-aged girls are still out of the classroom. Basij-Rasikh said she wants to provide girls an opportunity to leave their homes—without having to dress as boys—and access the means to achieve high school and college-level educations that will help them eventually become some of the first women to enter their fields." ... See more
Shabana Basij-Rasikh, a 2014 National Geographic Explorer, wants to bring an end to the “bacha posh” tradition in Afghanistan.
Happy Father's Day! A big part of what drives the success of Girl Pioneers is family support. "In most public schools, you don't see fathers coming to check in on their daughters. That's not seen as important; it's seen as women's work," says Vilma Saloj, Director of the Starfish Impact School. That's not the case for girls in our program. We regularly see mothers AND fathers coming in to speak with educators and see how their daughters are doing. Sit in on any given parents meeting and you'll be amazed to see how vocal fathers are in sharing their experiences. This is how we break cycles of sexism. Thank you for being such supportive dads!!! Photo credit: Anna Watts ... See more
Yesterday was the first day in a brand-new and exciting partnership between the Starfish Impact School and Ajchowen, a theater troupe of Maya actresses. Earlier this year, our students traveled to Santiago Atitlán (across the lake) to see Ajchowen perform their original play "Ximonïk", which explores themes women's rights, colonialism, and religion. "We don't have a lot of liberty as women and we wanted to give another vision to our lives. We want to inspire you all to be artists as well," said Ajchowen actress Clara. Over the course of 2 months, the girls will be writing and performing their own plays under Ajchowen's guidance! ... See more
It's exam week at the Starfish Impact School, and students just finished up their Language Arts exams. They finished early, so they're enjoying some well-deserved free time in the Starfish library! We found students reading everything from Harry Potter to geography books! ... See more
“If women have access to sexual and reproductive rights they make the best decisions for themselves, for their families, and for the planet." We're continuing our celebration of #WorldEnvironmentDay this week. Check out this excellent piece written by the Universal Access Project (a project of the United Nations Foundation) that focuses on local NGO Fundaeco. Why invest in girls and women? Because it can change literally everything. ... See more
What do women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights have to do with the environment? Everything, says Marco Cerezo, General Director of FUND...
Today, our friends from Aprende Sheva ran an educational workshop with Colegio Impacto students! Sheva is an organization that teaches teaches women and girls how to use and take advantage of existing and life changing tools found on mobile technology. Students learned how to use their smartphones for more than just making calls and sending texts; they learned about learning and practicing languages through Duolingo; they learned about internet security and how to keep themselves safe online. This week, Sheva will continue giving tailored capacity-building workshops to entrepreneurs in our Small Businesses Program, high school-aged Girl Pioneers in traditional mentorship, and our staff. We are so grateful for these important partnerships. Thank you Sheva! Muchísimas gracias por el apoyo. (Shout to our awesome facilitator, Luis!) ... See more
Today is World Environment Day. All of the communities we serve surround Lake Atitlán, arguably one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. However, years of contamination by agrochemicals, raw sewage, litter and shore development have taken their toll on the health of the lake and the health and livelihoods of the people who surround it. Contaminated water leaves children with parasites, which in turn stunt their mental and physical development and often lead to more serious illnesses. High levels of pollution deters tourism, a mainstay of the local economy. This is one of the reasons why we focus so much on environmentalism at Starfish. For example, our mentorship curriculum for high school students includes a module on environmental education. Students learn about responsible consumerism and the environmental impact of individual towns around the lake. Students also regularly participate in activities like trash clean-up along the shoreline and brainstorm individual actions they can take to minimize their ecological footprint. Follow in the example of Girl Pioneers and make one green change today. Our planet will thank you for it! ❤️ 🌎 ... See more
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Starfish is dedicated to unlocking and maximizing the potential of young women to lead transformational change. http://www.starfish-impact.org
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