Desi Girl Friendship Circle
From the research Dreams of Pakistani Children, we understood that young girls are facing different sets of obstacles. Quite a few girls have expressed reservation or concerns about whether they would be able to achieve their dreams. Many girls said they were unable to speak with family members about their difficulties. There is a lack of visible role models from the South Asian female working community in Hong Kong who share the same culture value, and might have gone through the same difficulties as these young girls.
Desi Girl Friendship Circle is an opportunity for 30 ethnic minority girls, mostly university students, aged between 18- 25 years old (mentees) to meet with passionate and committed South Asian working women (mentors).
There are 6 Desi Girl Friendship Circle Dinners between September 2019 and May 2020. Each dinner gives the mentees opportunities to network, discuss issues and concerns, and hear the stories of successful, talented South Asian women. Also, this programme assists these girls to have a safe space to talk, make trusted friends, and share and find guidance around physical, emotional, and mental health.
- 93% of the mentees who attended the dinners felt that the sharing of information over various topics has been very useful and practical.
- 93% of the young girls agreed that they got better tips on the topics discussed to manage their personal life, relationships, and career pathways.
- 100% of the mentors said that the mentees were safe and comfortable in this dinner setup.
- 91% of the mentors observed that the mentees were curious about learning and listening from them and peers.
- Feedback from Mentees-
- “I have had one of the most honest and raw conversations over these dinners. It is amazing to see how much the support of women can bring strength to each other.”
- “These gatherings have helped me so much. I have learnt to realize how important is an ‘all- girls’ event- we can share without fear and prejudice.”
- “The mentors are amazing women who continue to inspire us. They give us useful advice on how to tackle certain situations.”
- Feedback from Mentors-
- “These dinner series are a learning journey and eye-opener for me as well. I have learnt resilience from these mentees.”
The 2019-2020 project is funded by 12 mentors. These mentors are high achieving South Asian women from various professional spheres like arts, finance, healthcare, marketing, human resources, legal, literacy, research & academia.