Asanko Gold Women In Mining (WIM) in partnership with African Business Center for Excellence (ABCDE) has started a mentorship program for girls in the Amanasei West District of the Ashante Region to promote Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Education ( STEM) to bridge the gap between male and female in that area of study.
The Programm which is themed “Each for Equal” is designed to focus on girls in STEM education and help them reach their full potential in the science field. The partnership which took place at Manso Atwere, formed part of activities to round off this year’s International Women’s Day marked last Sunday across the world.
Beyond encouraging girls to study STEM, the programme was also to disabuse students’ minds from engaging in activities that would interfere with their education such as ‘galamsey’, gambling and prostitution.
A Geological Database Administrator with Asanko, Mrs Winnifred Ocran, expressed worry at the yawning gap between males and females in the sciences and their capacities to attract top-class jobs.
For instance, she noted that only 25 per cent of women ventured into IT-related jobs, 11 per cent of them qualified for technology-related jobs and five per cent for business start-up jobs.
Mrs Ocran said the worrying statistics triggered Asanko WIM to push for a practical solution to bridge the gap.
“Empowering women and girls is key to economic growth, political stability and social transformation. The Sustainable Development Goal Five emphasises gender equality and empowering women and girls, of which Ghana has now become one of the internationally recognised countries in the ‘HeForShe’ global campaign initiated by the United Nations Women,” she said.
The geologist noted that although advocacy was ongoing, there were still numerous challenges faced by the rural girls which impeded their progress.
ABCDE has identified about 20 Senior High Schools, including Saint Thomas Aquinas, Achimota, Accra Girls, Ghanata, Accra Wesley Girls and Labone, and two universities that have recognised the need for mentorship and internship for their students, and ABCDE has supplied these institutions with in-school mentorship and company-based internship opportunities for their students.
ABCDE manages the implementation of scholarships and has the ABCDE STEM Scholarship Fund.