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This year, Sarawak FPA, with the support from Ministry of Women and Family Development, has started a one-year pilot project called, “One Year Programme For Teenage Girls – A wholesome approach towards a healthy living for teenage girls”.

It is indisputable that due to the changes in living standards and exposures through mass media and Internet, there have been an increasing number of teenage girls engaging in unhealthy lifestyle and high risk behaviours resulting in problems such as teenage pregnancy, smoking and drug abuse. Sarawak FPA recognizing the need for a programme to be conducted specially for teenage girls, has taken the initiative to start a school-based programme meant to raise awareness as well as instilling a healthier lifestyle among the teenage girls.

Objectives of this project are:

  • To provide healthy and productive pass-time activities to teenage girls as a way of preventing them from indulging in unhealthy activities.
  • To provide accurate information and promote better understanding on mental & physical health of female adolescents.
  • To instil positive moral and life values.
  • To help female adolescents develop interpersonal skills, including enhancing communication with peers and parents, peer refusal skills and maintaining healthy and responsible relationships.

In this project, we introduce handicrafts such as embroidery and sewing “Teddy Bear” as not only an interesting but also a productive pass-time for the teenage girls. By incorporating RHAM concepts such as Taking Care of My Health, Me and My Values, My Friends and I, as well as My Family and I, our FPA works to promote the well-being of female adolescents physically and to develop positive values in them.

This year, Sarawak FPA has received a lot of support from the state Education Department in carrying out our activities in school and this project is no exception. The Education Department specially appointed SMK Petra Jaya for this project to be implemented. A total number of 20 Form 4 girls were selected to participate in this workshop which commenced on 7 April 2003 with the embroidery workshop. In the beginning, participants were not very keen as they felt embroidery is something boring. But after, the 2nd session, they began to show interest and were able to come up with interesting patterns on their work. Students were even proud of their works. Thus, the students expressed their interest to continue doing embroidery of different patterns for them to try out this new skill that they have learned. After the embroidery workshop, our programme continued with the sewing workshop where participants were taught to make “Signature Bear” using cloth and cotton. Participants were more cooperative and by the end of sewing workshop, participants’ attitude improved and they have shown more interest and concentration in their works. As of now, 7 sessions including RHAM topics have been carried out in the school. According to the school teachers and facilitators, participants’ attitudes toward learning and task given have significantly changed, as they were more receptive, polite and shown to be more responsible.

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