By:Curtis Morton

Charlestown-Nevis—A motivational workshop was held for high school girls, at the Nevis Disaster Management conference room at Long Point, on Wednesday 7th December.

The workshop was coordinated by National carnival swim wear contestant of 2016, Miss Zina Hyman, in collaboration with the Youth Department on Nevis and was dubbed ‘Self-esteem in girls.’

Director of the Youth Department, Miss Zahnela Claxton, chaired the proceedings and welcomed the almost 30 young ladies, hailing mainly from the Charlestown Secondary and Gingerland Secondary Schools, to the forum.

She praised Miss Zina Hyman for being brave and committed enough to share her experience with the young ladies.

The proceedings commenced with prayer by Guidance Counselor, Mrs. Lornette-Morton and the singing of the national anthem by Miss Senovia Vaughn.

This was followed by an inspirational session led by Caricom Youth Ambassador, Miss Joy Napier, who did a very interactive session with the girls, which commenced with them helping to assess ‘what it meant to be a girl.’

This session helped to outline the way that society mentors and schools girls in terms of expected behaviour patterns and also demonstrated the marked difference in the way that boys are schooled.

She also spoke about the ongoing scourge of violence against women and indicated to the girls that when they are in a relationship and the man hits them once, they should exit that relationship and thus ensure that such a pattern is stopped in the process.

Featured speaker for the day, swim wear contestant for Carnival 2016, Miss Zina Hyman, gave a very emotional overview of her horrific school life, during which time she suffered from low self-esteem, as she was constantly bullied, told that she was too black and not pretty.

She shed a few tears as she reminisced on her traumatic school life but pointed out to the girls that she eventually made up her mind to participate in the Culturama swim wear pageant and although she did not place, she has found a new lease on life and now values her self-worth.

Since then she also participated in the 2015 Gingerama swim wear pageant and although she again did not place, her self-esteem has been buoyed by the experience.

She is now entering the Carnival 2016 swim wear show and although she does not know what the outcome will be, she is is now definitely more confident and self-assured.

Counselor at the Youth Department, Miss Kerdis Clarke, then conducted a session on FEARS.

The girls were asked to place one of their main fears on a slip of paper, without giving their names and these were discussed in a group setting. Some of the fears listed ranged from the fear of death, fear of insects, to the fear of speaking in front of an audience.

The discussion ended with a discussion on how to deal or cope with such fears.

Director of Youth, Zahnela Claxton then went deeper into the discussion on fears and the young girls were also privileged to have confidential sessions with the trained Counsellors on hand.

Then came the fun part, as Zina Hyman assisted the girls in making sashes and writing a word to aptly describe themselves and then model for the remainder of the participants.

The girls certainly had fun doing this.

The general feeling coming from the young ladies, was that they appreciated the efforts of Miss Hyman in motivating them and they would be better persons for the experience.

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