Supporting Adolescent Girls’ Education (SAGE)

Project completed implementation in July 2023

The Supporting Adolescent Girls’ Education (SAGE) project targeted up to 13,460 highly marginalised, out-of-school adolescent girls in 11 districts across Zimbabwe to achieve improved learning outcomes and assist them with transition into formal education, training or employment.

Through a consortium of faith-based, academic and private sector partners, the project focused on providing high-quality, accelerated, non-formal education based from 88 accessible and girl-friendly Community-Based Learning Hubs (CBLHs).

As a gender transformative education programme, SAGE worked at multiple levels to promote and improve education for girls by tackling the root causes of gendered social and economic barriers and to create an enabling environment for transforming unequal gender norms.

The programme was implemented under the oversight of the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education (MoPSE) and worked to operationalise their Non-Formal Education (NFE) Policy which promotes alternative pathways to increasing access to quality education for marginalised learners.


  • Provided out-of-school girls with high-quality, accelerated learning in CBLHs and eliminated barriers to education through the provision of free, accessible, inclusive and flexible learning opportunities.
  • With the onset of COVID-19 and lockdown measures, a multi-modal delivery model enabled community volunteers to support girls via phone, at the household and in small community groups.
  • Supported community educators to enhance their capacity to deliver inclusive, gender-responsive pedagogies, through a range of methods including creating mentoring linkages with the support of District-level education officials, virtual and in-person trainings and establishing reflective Communities of Effective Practice.
  • Supported adolescent girls and boys to improve their self-esteem and life skills through Plan International’s Champions of Change Model and the exploration of issues such as Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR), gender rights and economic empowerment.
  • Improved access to skills training through an integrated skills outreach programme whereby girls were mentored and trained by local mastercraft people in a community-based vocational training programme to increase livelihood opportunities for the girls and their families.
  • Worked with communities including men, boys and local leaders to adopt more positive gender attitudes and mobilise them to support and protect girls through intergenerational dialogue and being champions of positive masculinity.
  • Shared evidence, research and learning - including girls' own voices and experiences - with key stakeholders to become more responsive to the needs of out of school girls in Zimbabwe.

Plan International UK: