Girls' economic empowerment
NHH and the research foundation ESRF have jointly conducted a multi-year study on «Girls’ Economic Empowerment: Evidence from Tanzania».
Policy makers, researchers and representatives from embassies, non-governmental- and civil society organizations gathered to witness the dissemination of a study on how to empower adolescent girls in terms of their health, education and livelihoods.
The guest of honor was the Assistant Director for Gender from the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Ms. Mboni Mgaza. The Norwegian Ambassador Hanne-Marie Kaarstad as well as ESRF's executive Director Dr. Tausi Kida also gave opening speeches.
The study, which lasted for five years from 2013 – 2018 was partly financed by the Norwegian Embassy in Dar es Salaam, and based on a programme designed and implemented by Femina Hip, the largest youth-focused civil society multimedia platform in the country. Femina Hip enrolled the programme which was offered to 6000 girls in secondary schools all over the country. The girls were randomly offered an entrepreneurship programme, a reproductive health programme, both programmes or no programme at all.
The researchers then investigated the effects of the programmes through a randomized control trial method.
Professor Kjetil Bjorvatn, one of the researchers from NHH, presented the findings. He showed that targeting girls before marriage is very successful when it comes to enhancing their economic opportunities in the long-term. The reproductive health programme made girls seek more stable relationships and had some positive effects on their reproductive health, i.e. by reducing sexually transmitted diseases.
Speaking during the event, the Norwegian Ambassador to Tanzania, Ms. Hanne-Marie Kaarstad, highlighted the importance of empowering adolescent girls. She stated that "empowering women is not only the right thing to do, it is the smart thing to do" referring to how supporting women's position in Norway has contributed more to our country's wealth than our oil and gas resources since the 70's.
This is a shorter version of an article published on the webpages of the Norwegian Embassy in Dar es Salaam this week. Published on NHH Bulletin, with permission.