Travelling to Kasaka Secondary School in Gomba is a very unique experience. We literally sailed through our journey in fact one could be fooled we were heading to the airport. From Ntinda were Wizarts foundation is located to Kanoni town in Gomba we trekked on tarmac.  Along the way the angulating green savanna hills provide beautiful scenery along with dotted rural households along the road. Kanoni town is typically a rural town with old buildings, goats and cows wondering through and heavy cloud of dust rising from the construction of a new Gomba Sembabule highway. By the time we get to the Superwoman office in Gomba it’s blazing hot, we meet the field coordinator who then leads our journey to Kasaka SS


We made our entrance through the gate of Kasaka at lunch time. The school was a bee hive of activity as student rushing to the kitchen to pick up their lunch meal, many bicycles packed at the side of the gate. Evidently Kasaka SS looked like a sea of blue and white spread out. We could see two long lines of students with plates and small plastic buckets lined up. Others would be walking back to their classes or dormitories with their plates filled with posho and beans  We made our way to the head teacher’s office who welcomed us warmly and shared with us the impact that the Superwoman project was making in her school especially the increased retention and early reporting of girls. Very quickly we were joined by teacher Aida Nakakande the Lead Female teacher. She greeted us warmly and quickly went about mobilizing a group of girls so that we could have some time with them and discuss the topic of the month. When she came back to let us know that the girls had been mobilized she insisted that it would be good for us to sit under that guava tree shade where it was cooler. It was very interesting to talk to the girls about gender equality and listen to their thoughts questions and challenges  and be able to inspire them go after their dreams.   As we drew towards the end of the discussion I noticed three girls walking towards the group. What struck me the most was they were not in uniform but they seemed to be at ease joining the group of girls without fear?

Justine Nawangi stood out of all the rest. She carried an aura of confidence about her, she blended in with the girls so well and they received her with warm hugs. That’s When teacher Aida whispered in my ear that she was the best performing girl during the Uganda certificate of education examinations and the Super Woman  during the February 2017 Gala in Gomba.

With resolve I called Justine aside with excitement all ears to know what she had to say about her recent academic achievement.

We sat down on a wooden bench as the rest of the girls rushed back to class. In her own words Justine says I joined the superwoman activities in December 2016 when it first launched out in secondary schools in Gomba. I did not have any serious intentions or agenda at first other than having a good pass time activity. I was not interested in school, did not care how I performed and I shunned talking to teachers or even accommodating a thought of ever asking them for help. This was compounded by a deep sense of shyness that hung around me like a cloud and failure to express myself in public. All these birthed low self-esteem. To me school was a routine kind of activity which I had to attend because my parents were paying fees and the end of the day it did not matter how I performed.

Figure 1: Justine Nawangi-Kasaka SS

Outcomes Attending the super woman meeting at school gave me very good ground to think about changing and becoming a better person. However even when I tried I failed because I was not focused. I remember the day we were asked to do rehearsals for a radio program. I was selection to be among the group of girls to travel to the city Kampala to record a radio show. I couldn’t wait for the day to go to Kampala. The thought of my voice being heard over the radio consumed me the whole time, it excited me so much. When we arrived we arrived at Ntinda. We were taken for lunch after which we attended a radio production training. The turning point was when we were talked to about standing confident and pursue our dreams. I could see that the ladies who were speaking to us were very accomplished smart and educated.

I wanted to be like them confident, smart, and educated being able to stand freely. So at that moment I decided that I was going to change. I would never be the shy girl that I once was. I understood the importance of staying in school and concentrating on my studies and reading hard to achieve my dreams. What helped me even more was winning the an award as the overall Superwoman for Gomba district at the first awards gala, I had represented my school well and all the students and teachers were excited, I was carried and admired throughout the school and it really changed the way I carried myself at school. It became easy to speak to teachers as they referred to me as “our super star”. I therefore became more engaging I would talk to my teachers more to help me explain the things which were hard for me to understand. I started being friendly to other girls in school and encouraging girls to stay in school. The change of behavior cannot be denied and for sure it did reflect in Justine good performance turning out as the best student during her ordinary level exams.

Figure 2: Juntine sharing her success story on the 3rd May DREAMS quarterly partner review meeting at the Imperial royal Hotel Kampala.

“I want every girl in Kasaka to love school and be confident”

This change has transformed Justine into a great leader both at school and home. During her senior four vacation her father had wanted her to do a short course and end it there but she calmly persuaded him to give her a chance to continue with her studies and be able to join university in future. She gladly smiles and says to me. Look I am more than a Form five student. I am the head prefect of Kasaka Secondary School. From a once very shy girl I have been transformed into a confident girl who is able to express herself and stand up to the heat of campaigns. Guess what the best part is that I won. Asked about how she feels about this new change Justine laughs and says “I want every girl in Kasaka to love school and be confident.

Every day I make it a point to counsel and advise other girls to do the best they can and stay in school.

The lead female teacher couldn’t agree more she says that Justine is a very good girl. This change, she affirms that it cannot be credited to anything else other the Superwoman project activities.


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