GenU and Global Girl Guides and Girl Scouts unite to empower girls and young women

The World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, GenU and UNICEF’s U-Report have come together with support of The UPS Foundation to empower girls and young women in underrepresented communities.

22 July 2020
Razafimandimby Olivia, 16, lives in Amboasary (Anosy Region). She gave birth to her son, Safidy, at the age of 15 and she forced to stop studying. Thanks to the lifeskills program, supported by UNICEF, she goes back to school and now in 2nd grade.
© UNICEF/UN0325674/Ralaivita


NEW YORK, United States, July 22nd 2020 – The World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) and Generation Unlimited (GenU) have come together to empower girls and young women from underrepresented backgrounds, ensuring they can make an impact in their communities and that their voices are counted and heard.

“At WAGGGS we believe this partnership has the potential to deliver real impact to girls and young women globally. By working with GenU, UNICEF’s U-Report and The UPS Foundation, we aim to not only work closely at a country level, but also ensure that this work feeds into a global voice for girls and young women. We want to build a strong evidence base for young women’s engagement and empowerment that can be mobilized on the global stage.” Imogen Fitzpatrick, Head of Strategic Partnerships at WAGGGS.

This unique partnership aims to work with WAGGGS’ network of 10 million girls and young women, one million volunteers across 150 countries and organizational expertise in non-formal education to benefit girls and young women in underrepresented communities. It will be supported by The UPS Foundation, amplified by UNICEF’s U-Report – a free tool for community led youth participation – and will utilize GenU’s evidence and insight in shaping the global debate on young women’s empowerment.

“Generation Unlimited is a vital program to engage young people in underrepresented communities around the world. The UPS Foundation is honored to have forged and funded the partnership with GenU, UNICEF and WAGGGS to bring together three preeminent organizations that will elevate the voices of girls around the world and enable young women to advance, thrive and help lift their communities.” Eduardo Martinez, UPS Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer and President of The UPS Foundation.

The program will initially enable young women across five countries – Rwanda, Nigeria, South Africa, Mexico and India – to access quality non-formal education and the opportunities it will bring them. This innovative partnership leverages the unique strengths of each organization in order to make the biggest difference for girls and young women. By working directly at a country led level, bringing together insights from a large pool of young people through U-Report polls and using this data to advocate for positive change for girls and young women, we aim to globally advance the gender balance.  

“We are excited to join forces with WAGGGS and U-Report to set a generation of girls on the path to empowerment and leadership in their communities and beyond. This is particularly critical now to mitigate the effects of the COVID crisis and ensure that girls continue to have access to the right tools and support to thrive.” Roberto Benes, Director of Generation Unlimited.

In Rwanda, the teams are developing a monitoring and evaluation framework to better understand girls’ and young women’s expectations from the Guiding program. They will also establish new Guide groups in primary and secondary schools where there is a high percentage of girls with disabilities. The purpose of this is to ensure wider inclusion of girls with disabilities from other educational settings in Guiding.

During the program’s second phase, WAGGGS, with support from The UPS Foundation, will expand the work to other countries through demand-based grants. This will be paired with the recruitment of a WAGGGS staff member to the Generation Unlimited Global Team to collaborate and share best practices on girls’ engagement.

WAGGGS and GenU will be working together with the girls and young women to develop a program name. This will be entirely girl-led and will be launched in line with phase two of the program along with the introduction of the demand-based grants.


Media contacts

Sophie Rymer
Global Programmes Manager
World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts
Andrea Apolo
Partnership Communication Specialist
Generation Unlimited

About the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts

The World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is the largest voluntary organisation for girls and young women in the world. We are the umbrella organisation for 10 million Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in 150 countries and we understand the issues that matter to girls because they tell us. Around the world, girls and young women face barriers, discrimination and inequality but we believe that every girl has the potential to change this and we empower and equip them to do so. We are here for every girl and any girl.

About Generation Unlimited

Generation Unlimited (GenU) is global partnership working to prepare young people to become productive and engaged citizens. It connects secondary-age education and training to employment and entrepreneurship, empowering every young person to thrive in the world of work.

About U-Report

U-Report is a free tool for community participation, designed to address issues that the population cares about.