Tiana Markova-Gold is a freelance documentary photographer based in Miami, Florida and Brooklyn, New York. She received a New York Times Scholarship to attend the full-time Photojournalism Program at the International Center of...
Skills:Research, Color Correction, Adobe Photoshop, Stylist, Photo Editing, Black & White Printing, Color Printing, Mixed Media, Fashion Styling, Multimedia Production, Photojournalism
The participants in the annual workshop come from many villages through out Kaduna state, but have been meeting for these workshops every year for the past four years and many have become good friends. Kaduna, Nigeria 2009
Two of the girls attending the annual Girl Child Concerns workshop have been married and had children within the past year. Despite the added challenges of motherhood and marriage, these young women are remaining in school. Kaduna, Nigeria 2009
Founded in 2004 by a group of local women in Kaduna, Nigeria, Girl Child Concerns works to empower adolescent girls through improved educational opportunities. According to UNICEF, only 35% of Nigerian children between the ages of 12 and 17 are attending secondary school. Traditionally, access to education in the northern states, which are predominantly Muslim, has been much lower, with the gender gap even wider. Secondary school enrollment rates for girls in some northern states are estimated to be as low as 15%. Girls in this part of the country face numerous barriers to education, including poverty and cultural expectations. Moreover, stringent interpretations of Islam prevent many girls from obtaining an education.
In 2004 Girl Child Concerns identified 200 promising girls in primary school and has been providing them with academic support, including scholarships and educational materials, in order to ensure their completion of secondary school and transition into university level education. Leadership and life skills development workshops provide the girls with a safe space to discuss their issues and meet with accomplished women from the northern states who serve as mentors for them and help assuage concerns that parents may have regarding the loss of identity, culture and religion that is often mistakenly associated with formal schooling.
Note: This work was funded by a fellowship from Global Fund for Children (Grassroots Girls Initiative) and the Nike Foundation (Girl Effect) in partnership with the International Center of Photography.
For more information about Girl Child Concerns visit www.girlchildconcerns.org