How career camps in Zambia are keeping girls in school

Watch one girl's experiences of a unique holiday camp

John James
Girls hug each other during a careers camp activity in Zambia
10 January 2019

In September 2018, more than 200 girls from grades 8 and 9 gathered at the Zambian Girls 2030 “Arise Girls Camp”, a career and skills camp held during the school holidays. The camp at Niko Girls Technical Secondary School in Southern Province is a platform designed to inspire, motivate and encourage young girls to explore their career options and become active citizens.

Our video team followed one of the girls, Esther Mayambo (14), who is dreaming of being the first person from her family to attend university: "I want to finish school so I help my parents so that we will be living a good life in the future."

She says the 5-day camp has helped her make new friends and learn practical skills for school and a future career. She wants to avoid the outcomes of many of her peers who drop out and marry in childhood.

The Zambian Girls 2030 project is run by the Ministry of General Education, supported by UNICEF with generous funding from the London Stock Exchange Group Foundation and implementation by Restless Development. It aims to give teenage girls training in life skills and financial literacy, and a broader vision for their careers. More than 200 school clubs are up and running, complemented by an annual motivational camp, and two rounds of internship programmes in the spring and summer. So far 5,408 girls are participating in the school career clubs. 829 girls have gone through the summer career camps and 233 girls have completed two weeks of internship placements.