June 23, 2009

New Partnership to Provide Mentors & Academic Scholarships to Ugandan Girls

The Amagezi Gemaanyi Youth Association (A.G.Y.A.) is proud to announce a strategic partnership with the Century City Alumnae chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. This partnership will include a mentorship component and provide scholarships to Ugandan girls.

Over the next 5 weeks, A.G.Y.A. will be accepting applications from high school girls entering Senior 4, 5, and 6. Scholarship recipients will be announced in late July, and the first awards will be distributed in early August. Recipients will be selected based on their involvement with A.G.Y.A. programs, their family’s financial need, their student progress reports from the past academic year, and their leadership potential.

In Uganda, young women living in poverty are fighting an uphill battle and face nearly insurmountable odds, including low academic expectations and lack of access to educated female mentors willing to challenge them to be high-achievers. Many girls in Uganda drop out of school midway through their high school careers due to their family’s inability to pay school fees, and buy materials such as books and school uniforms. In recent years, sexual abuse by school administrators who prey on defenseless young girls has also become an increasing challenge. Appallingly, less than 1% of the women currently enrolled in A.G.Y.A. programs report advancing past the 9th grade (Senior 4). Since our founding, A.G.Y.A. has been guided by the belief that investments in girls’ education and women’s empowerment initiatives can counteract gender inequity and reap long-term benefits for communities. This is why A.G.Y.A. will allocate the scholarship monies to high school girls.

In addition to providing scholarship funding, 15 members of Delta Sigma Theta will serve as mentors to girls in Uganda. Through bi-weekly e-mail correspondence, young girls in Uganda will be able to share their hopes, fears, stories, goals, and dreams with the dynamic, professional, successful, multi-talented women who make up the Century City Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Unlike a traditional pen-pal program, the e-mail correspondence between mentors and mentees will help Ugandan girls develop computer literacy skills while also giving them the unique opportunity to receive guidance and encouragement from their mentors.

This aspect of the partnership corresponds directly to the A.G.Y.A. Girls Program’s core vision, which is to provide Ugandan girls with positive role models and mentors, educational facilities and resources that will allow them to become successful female leaders in their communities.

A.G.Y.A. Girls Director, Divinity Barkley, says “I am so proud of this partnership and what it represents for cross-cultural dialogue and understanding, women’s empowerment, and education. Showing their commitment to global initiatives, the leaders of the Century City Alumnae chapter have committed to a long-term partnership, which is essential for the sustainability and growth of this project. I am honored to work with such amazing women for the betterment of young girls in Uganda.”

Not only does this program align with the A.G.Y.A. Girls Program’s core vision, but it also serves as an extension of the Century City Alumnae chapter’s award-winning scholarship programs, which have been so successful in the United States. Moreover, the structure of this partnership offers the members of Century City Alumnae chapter the opportunity to better understand the complex challenges facing girls and women in Uganda while also developing their chapter’s International Awareness & Involvement initiative.

Through this partnership, A.G.Y.A. hopes to empower and encourage young women to take control of their futures, finish high school with strong academic rankings, and pursue higher education at the collegiate level.

To support other A.G.Y.A. initiatives, send your tax-deductible donation to:

African Millennium Foundation |

c/o Amagezi Gemaanyi Youth Association

468 North Camden Drive |Beverly Hills, California 90212

** make checks payable to “African Millennium Foundation” and write AGYA—Uganda in the memo line to ensure funds are allocated to our programs in Uganda. E-mail: divinity.amagezi@gmail.com if you have additional questions about how to donate!