In an attempt to give boys a fair shake as do girls and to enable them to become meaningful contributors to society, the Louise Garland High School has implemented a boys mentorship programme.
Dr Vivian Otuonye, one of the teachers at the institution, and who spearheads the programme, told NewslineTCI that the school particularly choose young males as mentors, to whom the boys could easily relate.
“Boys need to be encouraged so that they can unleash their full potential and be people that will be resourceful for the future. So once a week we bring in young and responsible citizens who they can relate and look up to, who will not judge them and who will understand what they are going through and talk to them about situations such as being in class and not paying attention. And also talk to them about the ills in society, such as violence and substance abuse,” she said.
She said a large part of the mentorship programme is for the boys to ask questions and to tell their stories.
“When the young people come here to mentor the boys, the boys are also allowed to ask them questions, so that they would get some knowledge from these people. These things work…I have seen it work for years,” Otuonye said, explaining further that if boys do not get encouragement the country could lose them.
“Our boys in the Turks and Caicos Islands need encouragement. A lot go for the girls, but boys need encouragement. Because when these girls grow up and get good jobs…because most of the good jobs are with women…where are the boys and the men that we need?
“So, we are helping to bring out the boys that we need and get them involved, and make Turks and Caicos a place for everyone,” she said.