Emerge supports Sri Lankan girls, ages 10-18, who have been removed from their homes due to past abuse or the threat of abuse and are courageously testifying in court. These girls are placed into shelters that typically lack resources and educational opportunities; Emerge partners with these shelters to transform them into entrepreneurship hubs, where girls develop the business and life skills needed for self-sufficiency. Emerge equips these girls with skills and resources for their futures, using a comprehensive curriculum that emphasizes leadership, life skills, and business knowledge, while simultaneously generating a financial foundation for each program participant through the creation of unique jewelry.
Emerge runs three programs:
Former participants are brought together in an annual reunion hosted by Emerge, which also allows Emerge to continue supporting program alumnae.
Through these programs, Emerge has six primary goals:
|1)||Teach girls how to make jewelry and express themselves creatively.|
|2)||Engage a community of support locally and globally for all participants.|
|3)||Develop each girl’s leadership, responsibility, and self-respect.|
|4)||Generate a financial foundation for the future of each participant.|
|5)||Inspire entrepreneurship and self-reliance.|
|6)||Empower girls to actively shape their communities.|
Over time, girls age out of the institution in which they live or are transitioned into other homes. Emerge helps girls with this transition by providing: 1) annual reunions, 2) general support and check-ins, 3) connection to a variety of resources, 4) the opportunity to continue beading for a limited time while they transition, and 5) the opportunity to join the Emerge team through the Peer Educator Internship Program.
|1)||Reunions take place once a year at a varied location to allow girls from all parts of the island to attend a reunion. Reunions focus on celebrating successes, teaching new skills (such as emailing and computer programs or self-defense), and providing extra support.|
|2)||General support is provided by the Program Coordinator, who keeps in touch with past participants and is always available to talk, by phone or in person, about the struggles they are facing as well as their achievements.|
|3)||Emerge offers to connect former participants to a variety of resources including job connections, social service centers, and learning opportunities.|
|4)||Girls who would like to continue to bead after transitioning into society are allowed to submit jewelry products as they make this transition. This allows Emerge to support program participants during their reintegration and connect with them to get valuable feedback on the program.|
|5)||Program alumnae may also apply to be a part of the Emerge Peer Educator Internship Program, where they are hired by Emerge to help run the organization. They gain experience in teaching, office management, and professional development and serve as role models and allies for current program participants.|