World Bank Brings Adolescent Girls Program to Haiti, Yemen

    Haitian women clap to the music at an International Women's Day Celebration organized by the country's Ministry of Women's Condition and Women's Rights in Port-au-Prince this year. The World Bank is eyeing Haiti as the first country to benefit from the expansion of an international public-private initiative aimed at improving the lives and economic prospects of adolescent girls and young women. Photo by: Sophia Paris / United Nations

    The World Bank intends to expand the Adolescent Girls Initiative, an international public-private initiative aimed at improving the lives and economic prospects of adolescent girls and young women, to Haiti and Yemen.

    “We have secured initial funding for an expansion of the Adolescent Girls Initiative and we are hoping that the first country to benefit will be Haiti,” World Bank President Robert Zoellick said Oct. 6 in a statement. “Adolescent girls and young women living in poor homes have a hard time making the school-to-work transition. So investing in their skills development and job prospects will contribute to break the inter-generational patterns of poverty in their communities.”

    The bank and Nike Foundation have each pledged USD1 million to help young Haitian women make the school-to-work transition and improve their employment prospects. The project forms part of AGI, which is already active in seven countries. It will provide grants and cash stipends to some 3,000 adolescent girls in Haiti so they can attend vocational and training courses and skills development programs.

    Work is also about to begin in Yemen, where AGI will evaluate cash transfers from an existing World Bank-funded program that aims to help adolescent girls complete their education, according to Zoellick.

    AGI was launched in 2008 to promote the transition of adolescent girls from school to productive employment. 

    About the author

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      Ma. Rizza Leonzon

      As a former staff writer, Rizza focused mainly on business coverage, including key donors such as the Asian Development Bank and AusAID.