About Girl Child Network Worldwide

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

On The Up Book Launch

Betty Makoni with On The Up authors Rob and Nikki Wilson.

Last night we celebrated the completion of the On The Up project started by Nikki and Rob Wilson. In 2011, Nikki and Rob decided to leave their jobs and embark on a journey across Africa to meet social entrepreneurs who are making a difference in the lives of Africans. Their journey took them from the Cape to Cairo and along the way they met with eighteen individuals and organizations. Betty Makoni, founder of the Girl Child Network, was one of the individuals profiled in the book that the Wilson's wrote upon returning to England. The Royal Commonwealth Society hosted an event yesterday to celebrate the completion of the book and several of the individuals profiled in the book were able to speak. The projects discussed were diverse and included irrigation pumps in Kenya, production of equipment for disabled people in South Africa, training rats to detect land mines in Tanzania, funding education for former child soldiers in Southern Sudan, and Betty shared about empowering girls in Zimbabwe.

The large audience sat in wrapped attention as Betty shared the story of how she started the Girl Child Network. Betty was a victim of violence at a young age and chose to stand and be strong rather than be defeated. She decided to work to turn rape victims into leaders. In 1998 she started with a class of just ten girls and today her work has spread to influence over 300,000 girls in Zimbabwe. Her first office literally crumbled around her typewriter was missing the letter “E”! From these humble beginnings a vast network has grown to empower girls across Africa. These girls are growing to be strong women much like Betty herself. Many of the people in the audience were moved to tears by Betty's powerful story. She continues to be an inspiration to people everywhere to make a difference and fight for the rights of girls all over the world.

To learn more visit blog.ontheup.org.
Betty Makoni with fellow social  entrepreneurs Bart Weetjens and Shona McDonald.
Emmanuel Jal, Nick Moon, Betty Makoni, Shona McDonald, Bart Weetjens, and Peter Sinkamba.
Betty Makoni, Peter Sinkamba, Trevor Field, Nick Moon, Rob Wilson, Shona McDonald, Nikki Wilson, Bart Weetjens, and Emmanuel Jal.
Betty signing Trevor Field's copy of On The Up.
Joy Zhuwanet King and Betty Makoni. Childhood friends from Zimbabwe!
WOW representative Amelia Largey and Betty Makoni.

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