Standard Chartered’s Goal Programme Empowers Adolescent Girls and Young Women

Standard Chartered’s Goal programme empowers adolescent girls and young women


  • Standard Chartered’s Goal programme to reach over 365 000 girls in 20 markets by end 2017
  • Gender equality is not only a social issue but an economic imperative
  • Amanda Dlamini, former Banyana Banyana captain is key note speaker and delegate


Globally, the issue of gender equality is one that cannot be ignored. South Africa is ranked 15th out of 144 countries worldwide when it comes to promoting and addressing issues surrounding gender inequality, according to the 2016 WEF Global Gender Gap Report. The report further explains that gender equality is not only a social but an economic imperative. The report states that 3 out of 10 people employed in the country are females even though they are the majority gender. If women do not fulfil their economic potential, global economic growth suffers. It was found that various factors play a part in preventing women from achieving gender equivalence in the labour market, including cultural bias, lack of education, disease, poverty and gender-based violence.

 It is for this reason that, Standard Chartered launched the Goal programme in 2006. The primary purpose of this initiative is to empower and equip adolescent girls from low-income families with confidence, knowledge and skills, affording them the opportunity to fulfil their economic potential in the future.


“As a bank, one of our top priorities is to improve the gender balance in the business. For this to happen, we need to start by preparing girls to embark on a career. Educating girls and giving them tools to shape their own future both have a huge impact and effect on communities and societies,” says Natasha Kwakwa, Standard Chartered’s Goal Director.


“Goal supports girls to take their first steps as leaders in their own communities and families. We are aware that investing in girls can result in increased prosperity and diversity,” concludes Kwakwa.


The Goal programme is implemented and delivered in schools and communities, and the curriculum is based on training modules, with play based learning and sport at the core. Modules cover financial education, communication, hygiene and life skills that collectively seek to empower and raise the confidence of young adolescent girls.  An additional module was introduced in 2017 which provides practical experience on employability and entrepreneurial skills. 

The Goal programme started in Delhi had just 70 girls and by the end of 2017, the programme will have reached more than 365 000 girls in over 20 markets. In some markets, the girls have shown real leadership potential and have been inducted as Goal Champions. Between 2015 and 2016, a total of 2,350 Goal alumni took up these leadership roles. According to measurement and evaluation data from 2016, the programme has seen girls who believe in their own ability to lead and influence their own futures increase by 55%.

In South Africa, the Goal programme has 1272 girls enrolled for the year 2017 up from 600 in 2015 and 750 in 2016. Other girls will be reached through events outside the core programme with a view to reach the target of 1700 girls in total. The Beyond Girls’ Education Global Summit 2017 will be held on the 18th-19th July 2017 at the Maslow Hotel in Sandton. Former Banyana Banyana captain Amanda Dlamini is the keynote speaker at the gala dinner. She has been chosen as a delegate and influencer for the Beyond Girl’s Education Global Summit 2017. The event seeks to increase understanding about the best practices and opportunities to support girls’ economic empowerment and to increase the number of girls who benefit through new partnerships established with other stakeholders at the summit.


“I am extremely excited to be a part of such an amazing initiative. I am very passionate about girl children and their empowerment so when I was approached to be a part of this initiative, it was no brainer for me. For a girl from Harding in KZN I have been privileged enough to travel the world through sports and I am delighted that I am able to be a part of an organisation that seeks to do the same for other girls,” says Amanda Dlamini.  



Standard Chartered

We are a leading international banking group, with more than 80,000 employees and a 150-year history in some of the world’s most dynamic markets. We bank the people and companies driving investment, trade and the creation of wealth across Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Our heritage and values are expressed in our brand promise, Here for good.

Standard Chartered PLC is listed on the London and Hong Kong Stock Exchanges as well as the Bombay and National Stock Exchanges in India.

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Through a combination of sports and life skills training, Goal aims to empower and equip adolescent girls with the confidence, knowledge and skills they need to be integral economic leaders in their families, communities and societies.

We partner with global development organisations, who are experts in developing confidence, leadership and teaching life skills to adolescent girls. The girls play basketball, football, netball or volleyball, depending on the local game of choice. The girls learn key life skills, including how to stay healthy and manage their money.

Goal was first launched in 2006 as a pilot in Delhi and reached 70 girls. Since 2006, Goal has reached over 285 000 girls across the Bank’s global footprint. Goal aims to reach over 80 000 in 2017 bringing the total to 365 000 girls. By the end of 2020, we aim to have reached a total of 600,000 girls since the programme’s inception.

Goal will be active in twenty countries through direct Standard Chartered support and through our partners: Bangladesh, Brazil, China, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nigeria, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Uganda, The Gambia, UK, Vietnam, Zambia.

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