Sparkling Examples of Leadership and Determination at SEGA

A Letter from Executive Director Laura DeDominicis

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On my recent week-long stay on the SEGA Girls School campus I was repeatedly amazed by the myriad ways our students showed leadership and determination. While visiting the new library I found a new Form I student, organizing her ideas and plans to create a monthly SEGA newsletter with her fellow students. She had already signed up many students and was excitedly discussing topics with our Communications volunteer Dana Droller.

Another student, an aspiring artist, when faced with the reality that SEGA is without an art teacher for the coming months, stepped up to teach art herself and start a new art club with her creative classmates. Form IV students, gathering for a monthly student meeting, took turns debating the pros and cons of various ideas for change they want to propose to their teachers. The most striking new idea was to move into one dorm so they could study throughout the night without disturbing the younger students in order to properly prepare for their important Form IV exam in the fall. One girl stood up and said, “We need to be the changemakers and achieve Level I distinction for the first time at SEGA.” Level I is the highest grade one can get on the rigorous Tanzanian national examination.

I believe much of this determination comes from SEGA’s Education for Life Program, which teaches life skills such as communication skills, public speaking, reproductive health, human rights and leadership through community service. All these skills create confident, self-aware and brave young women. Throughout the week I spoke to scores of girls and saw their joy and pride in their accomplishments in the classroom, in clubs and on the sports’ field. They were also eager to test and share their ever improving English skills, which is one of the biggest hurdles in entering secondary school which transitions from Swahili medium in Primary School to English medium in High School.

I was overwhelmed by the community of kind, bright, enthusiastic students and teachers at SEGA. In just 8 short years our supporters have provided a pathway out of poverty and a world of possibilities to these inquisitive girls. I am proud and grateful to be a part of SEGA and hope that all of you will consider visiting and seeing for yourselves what a tremendous difference each of you make in the lives of these girls.

– Laura DeDominicis