Solange. Valentine. Justine.


Genocide. HIV. War. Poverty. Rape. This is an incredible list of threats to a young girl. Many of us would struggle to survive only one of these, but on a recent trip to Rwanda I met many young women who have survived all of them – and thrived. Solange’s Story After Solange’s parents died, the only way she could survive was to cross the border illegally from Rwanda into the Democratic Republic of Congo. Solange was taking a “short cut” – an [...]

Transect Walk

Engaging children in community mapping and other participatory methodologies


Firelight’s Resilience Initiative provides funding and capacity building support to grassroots organizations in Tanzania working to ensure children realize the fulfillment of their rights and their potential within a safe, caring, and protective environment. Child participation in community-based initiatives is important, particularly for programs for children. Children provide a unique and critical perspective that can help to ensure programs and activities truly respond to their needs and priorities. In July and August, our Shinyanga-based grantee-partners in the Resilience Initiative carried out community [...]

21st century blog

Tackling barriers to secondary education using Human-Centered Design


Firelight is working with a small cohort of Malawian partner organizations that interact with communities, students, teachers, local leaders, and government officials. The initiative uses a human-centered design (HCD) method to develop innovative approaches that improve transition, persistence, and exam pass rates for students in community day secondary schools. As this initiative launched, one lesson became very clear: human-centered design requires a complete shift in thinking about a problem, and this shift takes time. The organizations chosen for this initiative were [...]




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