I learned that a girl child needs school for her own survival and bright future. I learned a woman should not be silent [...] She should stand up for her rights."
15-year-old Adah lacked confidence in herself before she started visiting the library and participating in the mentoring program offered under Lubuto’s DREAMS Innovation Challenge grant.
“I took advice from a friend [who] told me to face my fears. She said, ‘If you are scared of people they will be taking advantage of you.’”
At the library Adah joined the DREAMS mentoring program, focused on fostering determination for education and preventing HIV in adolescent girls, and also learned how to use computers for the first time. These opportunities reshaped Adah’s sense of what girls and women can do, and of what is possible for her own future.
“I was raised to believe that the man is the only person who can run a home, [and] when I lived with my grandmother, I learned it’s not necessary for a girl to go to school.”
But at the Mthunzi Library, Adah learned new lessons: “I learned that a girl child needs school for her own survival and bright future. I learned a woman should not be silent [...] She should stand up for her rights.”
With support from library staff that Adah now considers “part of the family,” Adah has developed the confidence to use her voice to stand up for others. She now aspires to become a journalist when she grows up, and uses the Mthunzi Library to research her future career.