The Rafiki Girls' Centre
The Rafiki Girls Centre is an independent organisation which provides nine month courses to some of Harare’s most disadvantaged and vulnerable young women. On average, Rafiki receives 2 applications for every place it has available. The Centre has two intakes – one in January and one in July – and takes in 60 girls each year. Because of the high demand for places, girls are selected on the basis of need; they all live in extreme poverty and many are also victims of abuse.
The girls are all between the age of 17 and 25. In the first three months they take introductory courses, which include: Business Communication; Leadership; Time Management; Introduction to Computers; HIV & AIDS Awareness; Health & Hygiene; Choose Freedom; and Bible Knowledge.
In the second six months, each girl picks their own specific path and receives specialist training. Specialist courses include: Cutting and Design; Interior Design; Hotel & Catering; Preschool Teacher Training; Nurse Aid; and Cosmetology.
The formal education system does not cater for those who do not excel in academia. Through these courses, we are able to expand livelihood opportunities and empower disadvantaged women.
By challenging the history of gender imbalance in Zimbabwe which degrade women and result in the preference of boy children over girl children in education, Rafiki upholds women’s dignity and promotes gender equality.
VIDEO: 'Rafiki Girls Center: Empowering Women in Zimbabwe'
Promotional video by The Egmont Trust, one of Rafiki's main sponsors.