Well, the time has come to say good bye to the ADIMTU team, bid farewell to all the wonderful gang at the hotel, pack my bags and be on my way. It is always hard to leave, though at the same time, I know I couldn’t go at this pace and intensity forever, so perhaps the time has come just as it should. It has been a great three weeks, and this final one was icing on the cake.
In a marathon, we created a full year of activities for each of the three projects, which will now guide all four outreach workers and their intern assistants as they work their way through carefully sequenced participatory activities, four times a month from now through the end of September or beginning of October - depending on the school. If all goes according to plan, a week from now each staff person will have a 3 ring binder that will take her page-by-page through the year’s sequence. With each of the four staff teams doing basically the same thing on each school visit, there will be lots of opportunity for comparing notes, improving as they go along. And finally, at the end of September, there will be another round of refinement which will guide any changes for 2015. The stream of activities are really great, reaching toward our program goals of self esteem, self efficacy, improved written and verbal communication, taking responsibility for self and others, thinking critically, and making considered decisions - all building over the three years of the involvement in The Leadership Institute to help develop confident, capable, responsive young women leaders.
On Friday ADIMTU hosted the first teacher workshop of the year to re-engage returning teachers and orient those new to the projects, restate the program goals, and present the work plan for the year. The teachers were thrilled with the plans. In a brief written evaluation at the end of this session, they indicated not only a real understanding of The Institute’s goals, but the belief that the girls in their classes who had been involved in the ADIMTU projects had indeed become more confident, more participatory, more intent on school, and showed real leadership in their school community. I was thrilled. If the teachers are with us - we can really imagine we are changing lives - and with their help!!!
We ended today with a celebratory lunch with ADIMTU staff, interns and their families in a wonderful garden restaurant where we played a variation of dodge ball and cracked confetti eggs on each other’s heads - a little ahead of Carnival, but it was fun none the less, as we bid farewell for the coming months.
Thank you for keeping up with our journey, our efforts, and, at this point, our extraordinary progress forward.