Youth Exchange South to South (YESS) – Girls Movement in a WAGGGS exchange programme for young women that enable them to travel in another country for six months to see, learn, practice and bring back what is done elsewhere; in turn bringing to their host organizations strengths and experiences from their home Associations.
It isa flagshipproject in Africaimplemented by nine countries in proudpartnershipwith World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scoutssupported by FK Norway.
Through YESS, Africanyoungwomenhave theopportunity to explore and contribute to Girl Guiding in a different country awayfromtheirown for six months. The halfyearexperience and interaction withother participants and people enable the girls and youngwomen leaders to appreciate cultural diversityacrossAfrica and beyond; hencestrengtheningtheir spirit of tolerance and respect for cultural differencesbetweentheir countries and bring back home best practices at the benefit of the country theyrepresent.
Eachyear AGR reruit new cohortbetweenthree and four delegates, and in return hosts otheryoung girl guides fromother countries. Most part of their job consists of collection of data, campaigning about SustainableDevelopment Goals (SDGs) and girls’ issues and recruitwhileretainingmembers in the movement.
After six months, the Rwandandelegateswhoretun use lessonslearnt to contribute to support their local communities and conductadvocacywork.
In 2018, the AGR have received participants from Nepal, Malawi, Madagascar and Kenya. In 2019, the AGR received eight participants from Kenya, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Madagascar, Bangladesh, Tanzania and Zimbabwe. For six months, each team’s role has been significant. They have recruited new Girl Guides (enrolling 2,198 new members in 2018 and 1400 so far in 2019), conducted campaigns on anti-teen pregnancy and anti-alcohol and drugs, worked with Ni Nyampinga Ambassadors to create new Girl Guiding troops,and conducted an online campaign for a healthy environment known as “Green Tech Generation” among other activities.
These initiatives have contributed to raise awareness about the Girl Guiding movement in Rwanda and attracted numerous potential partnerships. During the home coming seminar in 2018 in Zambia, the AGR was awarded three times for its compliance, membership growth and for possessing the most supportive YESS team.