World Education is dedicated to improving the lives of the poor through education, and economic and social development programs.

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New Videos Highlight Mothers’ Associations in Benin

February 19, 2020

“As a group of women, we have power.” 

Since World Education introduced the Mothers’ Associations (AMEs) in Benin in 2003, AMEs have been strengthening schools and giving women a voice in their own communities, creating a more equitable environment for them and their children. In these videos, developed through a University of Ottawa initiative, you can hear first hand the astounding effect that AME’s have had on Benin communities. 

 

AMEs give women a greater voice and representation in School Parents’ Associations, which are typically dominated by men. They often began with self-initiated activities, including advocating for girls’ education and equity concerns, which lead to community education planning and problem-solving. They have also contributed to community safety and accountability by tracking down men who committed rape and domestic violence, intervening to stop arranged marriages of young girls, and meeting with school directors to ensure teachers are present for their child’s lessons.

Over 630 AME’s have been formally integrated within Parent-Teacher Associations in Benin, and they work every day to maintain and manage primary schools, increase access to education for children with disabilities, combat child trafficking and improve gender equity in their schools. School feeding programs have been established and upgraded, more school supplies have been purchased, and there has been higher general enrollment and academic successes. Parity in boys’ and girls’ access to primary school is close to being a reality.  Although AME participants have often had to overcome many obstacles, they have gained confidence, negotiating skills, and are now empowered to improve themselves and their communities. 

 

Read more about World Education’s AME initiative and early scale-up here

 

These videos were created by the members of Mothers Associations as part of Leva Rouhani's doctoral research. For more information contact leva.rouhani@gmail.com