Gender Equality and ‘Journey to Support Ethnic Minority Female Students’



"Journey to support ethnic minority students" initiated by a group of Tay Bac University lecturers has made female students feel proud of their ethnic traditions, confident and inspired to contribute more to the community.

Be companions of students

As the Team Leader, Lecturer Vu Thi Duc joined other members Le Van Anh, Leo Thi Tho and Nguyen Van Bao on the journey. They share the same view: by accompanying ethnic minority students they can help students not only to understand gender equality, but also to provide them with advice and assistance, and discover their strengths to develop and contribute more to the community.

Vu Thi Duc and her students at a lecture on gender equality
Vu Thi Duc and hers students at a lecture on gender equality

Lecturer Vu Thi Duc has applied the knowledge she gained from gender equality training supported by Aus4skills in order to help ethnic minority female students at Tay Bac University (TBU) to feel more confident and to excel at university.

Lecturer Vu Thi Duc shared: "At first, we called for volunteers who were lecturers and staff at TBU to join the journey. Teachers should use gender knowledge, skills, gender equality and self-development skills, basic counselling skills, team leadership and communication skills to support female students on the journey and support them in a long run, even after the project ends".

Practical and meaningful

The journey at TBU involved selecting 100 ethnic minority female students as core members and provided the opportunity for lecturers to share knowledge and skills acquired form their training with Aus4Skills with their students. These students were educated by lecturers in gender and gender equality.

Ethnic minority female students play an important role in gender equality awareness raising
Ethnic minority female students play an important role in gender equality awareness raising

These students have now become initiators in organising support activities for girls throughout the school. To increase operational capacity of the journey, a "Girl's Office" of 100 people has been established to create a space for reading, sharing information, and organising events for female students. This is also a place for lectures and students to share experiences and feelings about gender issues at school.

Lecturer Lèo Thị Thơ shared: "As a Thai ethnic minority lecturer, I found that that many female students, especially ethnic minority ones, have limited awareness of gender issues. By participating in the Aus4skills program, I realised that men and women have equal rights which include the rights to study, improve abilities and develop personally. I will help my students become aware of these equal rights, promote their strengths to contribute more to the society”.

Po Po Mu, a Ha Nhi ethnic student from Muong Nhe, Dien Bien, shared: "I have three other siblings. My parents are farmers and my family lives in difficult conditions. Some of my friends go to school, others get married. I’m so glad to be part of the journey. Now I can share my knowledge of gender equality with my family and community members.

We are going to organise 5 courses for ethnic minority female students on: self-development skills; communication skills; gender knowledge and; gender-based violence prevention; sexual abuse and assault prevention; management and leadership skills.

To share more about the journey, we shall also hold the contest "Proud Female Ethnic Minorities" and forums/dialogues on "enhancing the status and image of ethnic minority female students’ to help our students confidently develop their personal skills and feel inspired to contribute more to the community. - Team Leader Vu Thi Duc.

Source: Dantri

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