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Patricia and the VOW Grantee Partner that Helps Keep Girls in School
August 24, 2022
Just before the pandemic, in a village just outside of Kampala, Uganda we first met a young girl named Patricia. At the time, she was 13 years old and had recently started to participate in a program that VOW funds. The program is led by a local organization, Raising Teenagers Uganda, and is designed to help keep girls in school by offering mentorship, paying for their school fees and supplies.
Keeping her daughter in school was important to Patricia’s mother. She was determined to prevent her daughter from entering into child marriage, like she did as a teenager.
“I was a child bride – married at 17 because I didn’t have options,” said Patricia’s mother. “I had four beautiful babies – all girls. Patricia’s father left us because he was tired of having girls. He thought they wouldn’t amount to anything. He is wrong. Patricia and her sisters are going to be something.”
Since we met Patricia, her school experienced real challenges. The pandemic meant that her school was closed for almost 2 years. During that time, Raising Teenagers Uganda supported Patricia to keep her focused on learning and encouraged her to return to school when it reopened. This was not a given – many girls in the community felt too intimidated to return to school.

We recently checked in with Patricia – she’s back in school with her friends, back on track, and back in the program that we help fund. Girls around the world, like Patricia, are succeeding in school with the help of VOW and programs like those run by local organizations like Raising Teenagers Uganda.

Photo Credit: Esther Ruth Mbabazi

About VOW for Girls

From wedding registry donations to partner product purchases, everything donated to VOW (that’s 100% of donations!) goes directly to community-driven efforts to help girls around the world. Our grantees, which are mainly women-led local organizations, use the funding we provide to directly support girls.Twelve million girls a year, some as young as 8, become child brides. VOW is a global movement of the wedding industry community, partners and couples who are dedicated to a world where no child is ever a bride and where every girl has the chance to live the life she loves.If you’re in the wedding industry and you’re interested in becoming involved, please find more wedding inspiration and advice in our blog, consider becoming a VOW Pro partner and learning more about VOW’s mission to end child marriage. If you’re an engaged couple and want to learn more about supporting VOW, please visit our couples page. We can’t wait to see what good we can do together!
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