2022 Annual Report | Full Edition

This is the 2022 Annual Report FULL edition from Plan International Canada


Discover how Tanyaradzwa’s determined optimism helped her persevere (page 66).

Standing Strong in a world in turmoil, we persevered in 2022.

our mission

We strive for a just world that advances children’s rights and equality for girls.

ACKNOWleDGeMENTS A special thanks to all of our new and returning loyal supporters. Your commitment to us during difficult times in 2022 made all the difference for us and the children, families and communities we serve around the world. ON THE COVER Tanyaradzwa (pictured here) was one of the more than 52.2 million children and youths in 80+ countries Plan International partnered with in 2022. After her grandfather lost his job, she couldn’t afford to go to school. But then she moved into a Plan International dormitory in the Kwekwe district of Zimbabwe. Her school fees were covered and Tanyaradzwa stayed in school. After taking part in the Adolescent Girls & Young Women project, she learned how to protect herself from HIV and is sharing that knowledge with others in the community. She continues to persevere. Read her story on page 66 .

Plan International Canada

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Children in Cambodia attending a school that offers scholarships and additional training for teachers

2/ Health


2022 Annual RePort

Our expertise in health

30 31 31

SPOTLIGHT Mini WASH Cycle in Cambodia

NEWS FEED How adolescents in Bolivia are rising up IMPACT SPOTLIGHT REPORT CARD Healthy Women and Girls project in Mozambique STORIES OF CHANGE Ambulance services for moms in need in Mozambique PROJECT SPOTLIGHT Strengthening Health Outcomes for Women (SHOW) STORIES OF CHANGE Participants in five countries share their birth stories REPORT CARD SHOW measurable outcomes

Children including Kenza, in Burkina Faso attending FASST education program


Up Front


How we persevered in 2022



1/ Education


Lessons learned in 2022



Our expertise in education


Plan International’s global impact


SPOTLIGHT Girls in Benin and Cameroon get a second chance to study NEWS FEED Why are girls in Mali are missing out on school IMPACT SPOTLIGHT STORIES OF CHANGE Rehema’s back in school. What intervention helped? REPORT CARD Keeping Adolescent Girls in School project in Tanzania STORIES OF CHANGE From setbacks to backpacks in Burkina Faso, plus how Latifa FASST-tracked her way back to school REPORT CARD The Safer Schools in Burkina Faso project STORIES OF CHANGE Suggestion boxes in Burkina Faso

38 40


Plan International Canada’s impact


FEATURE | PHOTO ESSAY Our new mosquito-net-delivery strategy is saving lives in Zimbabwe 44

A letter from CEO Lindsay Glassco



A letter from board chair Patsy Anderson




This is Us



SPOTLIGHT How our Child Sponsorship program works, plus the Plan Effect



26 27


Jeanette attends classes in Rwanda for girls who had previously left school

Please note: when you read our Annual Report, hosted on FlippingBook, you are subject to their terms of service & privacy policy.

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COVER STORY I PHOTO ESSAY Tanyaradzwa’s determination to overcome daunting challenges shows how the power of perseverance can shape one’s life; plus, the launch of our new Embedded Storytellers pilot program, which champions storytelling from a local perspective 5/ Humanitarian Response & Resilience Our expertise in humanitarian response & resilience SPOTLIGHT The top 10 hunger hot spots in the world SPOTLIGHT How our education-in-emergencies program in Kenya and Nigeria is helping girls stay in school PROGRAMS SPOTLIGHT Our food-assistance, cash-transfer and school-meals programs in Nigeria, Myanmar and Sierra Leone SPOTLIGHT Hope and humanity in Ukraine, plus one woman shares how she and her son are building a new life IMPACT SPOTLIGHT How our policy, advocacy and public-engagement efforts made a difference in 2022; the Together for Learning Summit and what we’re doing on the world stage

4/ Youth Leadership & Economic Empowerment

3/ Protection From Violence Our expertise in protection from violence NEWS FEED How Plan International is working with transgender activists in El Salvador to protect their rights




Our expertise in youth leadership



PROGRAM SPOTLIGHT The five programs we offer youth in Canada: Girls Belong Here, Champion of Change Clubs, Speakers Bureau, Youth Council and The Power Within STORIES OF CHANGE Riti, a Girls Belong Here participant, breaks out of her comfort zone

51 51

SPOTLIGHT Because I am a Girl update



IMPACT SPOTLIGHT How Adaya avoided a forced child marriage in Bangladesh


A group of girls in Somalia make their way to school


72 73

SPOTLIGHT How minds are shifting about child marriage in Ethiopia

SPOTLIGHT Youth council member Jennifer shares her number one piece of advice for young people

52 53

59 60

REPORT CARD Combatting early marriage in Bangladesh

Supporters & Champions


Our expertise in economic empowerment


SPOTLIGHT How SWEET it is! Women in Egypt develop their entrepreneurial skills in the carpet industry NEWS FEED The Women’s Voice and Leadership project helps Ghana’s Queen Mothers reclaim their place I MPACT SPOTLIGHT Youth in Colombia built business skills to develop economic independence and challenged gender stereotypes in the process. REPORT CARD Leading for Peace in Colombia project SPOTLIGHT How entrepreneurial training in El Salvador is inspiring HIV patients to take their medication and focus on living a full life

Our generous supporters



EVENTS SPOTLIGHT We celebrate virtually and in person to express our thanks


86 87


Legacy supporters


SUPPORTER SPOTLIGHT Why three supporters joined Plan International Canada’s efforts to create a more just world

62 63

88 89


Institutional partners




Strategic Moves Looking back: 20 Million Reasons strategy highlights Looking forward : All Girls Standing Strong strategic plan

How donations reach communities

81 82 83

92 93 95

Girls learning about their sexual and reproductive health rights in Bangladesh

Revenue and expenditures

Why we report our financials the way we do

The Last Word

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How We Persevered What it means to learn, lead, decide and thrive in a world in turmoil in 2022.

1. BUILD BACK BETTER Creating a hybrid workplace is challenging and we didn’t always get it right, but our Build Back Better Task Force gathers staff input so we can learn, grow and adapt. 2. MORE INCLUSIVE In 2022, we did staff surveys, adapted policies and held workshops to further nurture our diversity, equity and inclusion strategy. Our executive management team took 20 hours of power, privilege and bias training. Organizations and individuals have blind spots. It’s a lifelong journey of learning, unlearning and action. 3. DATA-DRIVEN DECISION MAKING To be agile, we know we want to improve how we use leading indicators to make more timely data-informed strategic decisions to support sustainable impact. 4. IMPACTFUL STORYTELLING Our program monitoring and evaluation is rigorous, but we haven’t shared our impactful stories and results in enough detail. This Annual Report is a reflection of this goal.

C OVID-19, the hunger crisis, humanitarian crises, the climate crisis, the crisis in Ukraine, inflation... The world is swirling around us, and this can feel overwhelming. But despite everything, Plan International Canada persevered – and stood strong – in fiscal 2022. We did it with the help of our generous supporters, our passionate staff and committed community partners and participants from around the world. We’re forever grateful. Tanyaradzwa (page 66), who graces the cover of this Annual Report, also persevered. This image was taken by Joshua Kumunda, a photographer in Zimbabwe who participated in our new Embedded Storytellers program (page 69). It captures the theme of perseverance, which permeates every chapter. Watch the beautiful video by Kingston Musanhu about Tanyaradzwa. Spending the day with her at school was “life changing,” says Musanhu. “It took me back to times when I went to school and didn’t receive such life- saving interventions. We were not even allowed to talk about sexual health, let alone condoms.” In this year’s Annual Report, you will read impactful stories about program participants, supporters, youth activists in Canada and Plan International

Canada staff. We explain the breadth and depth of the work that we do and how we measure impact. There are also videos and impact reports you can view and download. (If you’re reading the full digital version, click the embedded links; for the printed Digest version, scan the QR codes.) WHAT WE’RE ESPECIALLY PROUD TO SHARE This year we completed two programs that changed the lives of millions of children and their families. On page 36, we report on the remarkable changes to maternal and child health care with our six-and-a-half year Strengthening Health Outcomes for Women project. This $72+ million project was supported by Global Affairs Canada with $11.6 million in matched funds from individual Canadian donors. It changed the birth story in Bangladesh, Ghana, Haiti, Nigeria and Senegal for more than 1.5 million mothers and children. On pages 62 and 86, we report on the changes we achieved in our five-year Leading for Peace project in Colombia. Global Affairs Canada provided $18.5 million, and we contributed $1.8 million in matched funding from supporters. Throughout the report, we share the progress we’re making in everything from tackling child,

early and forced marriage in Bangladesh (page 52) to addressing gender relations in Bolivia (page 31).

HERE ARE PEOPLE WE’D LIKE YOU TO MEET Plan International worked with more than 52.2 million children and youths in 80+ countries in 2022. Let us introduce you to some of them. Mayday is one of more than 40 sponsored children who picked up a camera to share their stories and show us around their communities. Don’t miss our interactive video map (page 19). Rehema overcame a harrowing commute to school with support from our Keeping Adolescent Girls in School project in Tanzania (page 24). Acina survived childbirth when she was transported to a hospital in a motorcycle ambulance provided by the Healthy Women and Girls project in Mozambique (page 33). We share more resilient stories in Protection From Violence ( Ingrid , page 50), Youth Leadership and Economic Empowerment ( Jennifer , page 59) and Humanitarian Response and Resilience, ( Ramla , page 74).

BEST MATES This photo of two little friends in Bolivia beautifully captures the need to look to the future but also face the present challenges head-on with courage and optimism. In this report, we share the success of our five-year 20 Million Reasons strategy (page 92) and our new global five-year strategy, All Girls Standing Strong (page 93).

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Plan International’s Global Impact in 2022

“We do fairy-tale therapy, drawing and singing. Singing is especially useful because children can detach themselves from where they are and what they have gone through.” – Maria, psychologist in Moldovan mobile unit

Plan International’s work reached 52 children , , including 27.7 MILLION GIRLS

5.9 MILLION GIRLS received better access to education

. 2 million


479,792 COMMUNITY MEMBERS AND VOLUNTEERS AND 87,261 STAFF in partner organizations and institutions were trained in child protection

27.7 MILLION CHILDREN AND ADULTS took early-childhood-care-and-development (ECCD) classes or received training







19.6 million children and adults received inclusive quality education

33.3 million children and adults received training in sexual and reproductive health rights

21 million children and adults were reached through gender-sensitive child-protection programs

6.7 million children and adults gained skills and had opportunities for youth employment and entrepreneurship

28.7 million children and adults , including 7.9 MILLION GIRLS , were helped through our work with communities experiencing crises

1 MILLION SPONSORS supported 1.3 million children in 16,979 COMMUNITIES around the world

Meet nine-year-old January from Tanzania. He’s one of the 1.3 million sponsored children. “One day, I’m going to be a pilot and travel the world,” he says. Most boys, however, end up in the mines that contaminate the drinking water that makes people ill. Today, says January,

Karelys, 8, participates in Plan International’s Safe Routes (Rumbos Seguros) project in Tumbes, Peru. Its goal is to ensure the safety and integration of Venezuelan

In Moldova, Plan International is working with the National Centre for Preventing Child Abuse to provide child protection and psychosocial support. Maria, a psychologist in

For young people in Guinea, finding decent work isn’t easy. Like many countries in Africa, it has a young population, with 75% of its 13 million citizens under age 35. In a society in which age commands respect, Guinean youth struggle to access quality education and find employment. Plan International set up a youth-employment project to address this issue. Youssouf, 21, dropped out of school early but is now apprenticing in a boilermaker’s workshop. Learn more about our youth-leadership and economic-empowerment programs on page 54.

Arkenzy, who lives in Indonesia, is one of the millions of teens who can now talk about subjects that were once considered taboo, like menstrual and sexual health, child marriage and gender-based violence. She’s a peer educator in our Let’s Talk program, an

migrants living in Peru. The project focuses on protecting children, adolescents and families from violence, abuse and exploitation. We strengthen child-protection structures and respond to child-protection incidents. Learn more about our protection-from-violence programs on page 48.

Here are a few of those millions of children who attended one of our early-childhood-care-and- development (ECCD) classes. These little girls are celebrating their graduation from our ECCD centre in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Learn more about our education programs on page 20.


our mobile unit, works with children like Milana, above. Maria fled Ukraine, so she understands what it’s like when conflict uproots your life. Learn more about our humanitarian-response and resilience programs on page 70.

information-sharing forum created and supported by Plan International. “I take better care of my body now,” she says. Learn more about our health programs on page 28.

people drink safe water from a borehole system that Plan International built in his community. Learn about another water-related project, in Cambodia, on page 31.

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Plan International canada’s Impact in 2022


15,393 CHILDREN AND ADULTS were helped through economic-empowerment initiatives 11,977 YOUTHS IN CANADA participated in broad-scale knowledge building through Power Within clubs and online programming

We received $274 MILLION from 17 INSTITUTIONAL PARTNERS and 200,447 SUPPORTERS to fund our work 102,101 GIFTS OF HOPE were purchased by ethical gift givers for a total of $7.2 MILLION

1.3 MILLION CHILDREN , ADOLESCENTS AND ADULTS received health care and education

581,627 PEOPLE were reached by our COVID-19 response

$1.48 MILLION was provided to refugees from Ukraine in the first four months of the crisis

382,996 CHILDREN AND ADULTS received food support








Plan International Canada’s work reached

140 , 965 children were supported by 98,417 SPONSORS in Canada

496 , 967 children , including 252,611 GIRLS , accessed education

129 , 661 children were protected from harm, including abuse and exploitation


including 6.2 MILLION CHILDREN , received life-saving services from our programs with The Global Fund to Fight HIV, TB and Malaria

in Canada participated in youth-engagement initiatives

were reached by Plan International Canada’s disaster-relief work

“If the world doesn’t pay attention, 811 million people struggling to find food in the world’s hungriest

What do you want your legacy to be? At 27, Beverly Marchand has already made a difference for future generations with a gift in

Mary Di, who became part of the Child Sponsorship program in Cambodia when she was four, shares how other Plan International programs are helping educate young people in her community about sexual health and teaching them job skills, like sewing, so they can be financially independent before they marry. Mary Di hopes to one day be a police officer like her father. Learn more about our Child Sponsorship program on page 18.

As part of the Eradicate TB & HIV project in Guinea, boys and girls participate in Champions of Change Clubs to learn how to fight against gender- based violence and about gender

A good teacher changes lives. But if you’re one of the 8,000 teachers living in Ghana’s most marginalized and hard-to-reach communities, it’s difficult to attend professional training workshops. The Train for Tomorrow project is an interactive distance- learning program led by expert trainers and funded with a grant from Dubai Cares. Learn more about our education programs on page 20.

Kassandra participates in our $11.5 million She Decides project in Peru. She joined our Political Advocacy and Governance program and launched Actívate, a youth-led group that raises awareness about girls’ rights. Her goal is to become a doctor so she will be able to help survivors of gender-based violence. Learn more about our protection-from- violence programs on page 48.

“Menstrual health is a human right. Women shouldn’t feel like it’s a curse to be a woman due to their periods.” – Ila, a youth ambassador at the Storytellers Symposium

her will to Plan International Canada. “A legacy gift allows you to make that extra contribution, and for me it’s a way to make sure that what I started when I was alive is still echoing in the universe afterwards,” says the PhD student from Sainte-Catherine, Quebec. Learn about other Plan International Canada legacy supporters like Beverly on page 87.

places will become a forgotten statistic,” declares Stephen Omollo, our new Plan International CEO. Learn more on page 70. $94 , 729 was raised during the first week of the hunger crisis campaign

equality and girls’ rights in the context of eliminating these diseases. The project, which was developed in partnership with The Global Fund to Fight HIV, TB and Malaria, also receives matched funds from Canadian supporters. Learn more about our health programs on page 28.



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Determination and optimism We have more than 20 million reasons to celebrate, plus a new strategy to increase our impact, says CEO Lindsay Glassco.

Transitions and Transformations After seven years with Plan International Canada, board chair Patsy Anderson reflects on her experiences and hopes for the future.

of Fame. I’m grateful for the efforts of everyone at Plan International Canada in creating a strong culture, the true foundation for growth, innovation and sustainability. This year we also enhanced our diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, completed a digital transformation and established PlanCatalyst, a for-profit subsidiary that creates partnerships and revenue-generation models that build impact. GOVERNANCE, GRACE AND GRIT I want to offer my deepest thanks to Patsy Anderson. After seven years on our board of directors, she is handing over the role of chair to the Honourable Rona Ambrose. Patsy is a true champion of our mission to make the world an equal place for all children. We are thrilled to welcome Rona, who brings with her a wealth of experience. Thanks, as well, to our board of directors and to our generous and loyal supporters for joining us on this journey to create a world in which children’s rights are respected and there is equality for girls.

Sandengomusa and her father, Leonard. They attended seminars where they talked about topics that some consider to be taboo, like menstruation. YOUTH VOICES We consult youth when we design programs, and now, for the first time, we have a youth voice on our board. Paula Sahyoun joined this year as a full director. I thank her and all the board members for generously sharing their experience and passion. A special thanks to David Adams, who, like me, is departing this year. He has been an exemplary leader. TRANSITIONS Finally, a successful and energetic board requires term limits and succession planning. What a home run to have the Honourable Rona Ambrose succeed me. Being chair has enriched my life, and I will continue to support Plan International Canada because I love its work. It is meaningful and innovative and leads to sustainable change for millions of children and their families worldwide.

IMPACT AND SCALE “We are happier, there is more love in the household and I have much stronger relationships with my children and wife.” This personal reflection, shared by Moussa*, was a standout moment for me in Senegal last year, when I visited our programs with the Honourable Harjit Sajjan, Canada’s minister of international development. Moussa participated in a Fathers Club, a Plan International program that is sensitizing men to their wives’ health needs and the importance of their participation in household chores. It was also wonderful to hear from Senegal’s minister of health that this program has been integrated into the health system nationally. It’s a sign of the sustainability of Plan International’s work. MILESTONE MOMENTS This year, we also successfully completed our five-year strategy 20 Million Reasons and approved our next five-year strategy, All Girls Standing Strong. Over the past five years, even through pandemic-related challenges, we persevered and achieved significant results: We reached 31 million children and raised $1.23 billion. FUTURE-PROOFING In March, we became the first NGO to be inducted into the Waterstone Canada’s Most Admired Corporate Culture Hall

LOYALTY AND GRATITUDE These words come to mind when I think about what we learned as an organization last year – or, indeed, what we learned throughout the pandemic. Our supporters stayed with us during difficult times. It’s moving and inspiring because they chose to use their discretionary dollars to support us. SUSTAINABILITY AND IMPACT Our work is meaningful for children worldwide because when we have completed a program and it’s time to leave a community, we know the children and families will continue to thrive and have been forever changed. I get goosebumps when I recall a conversation I had with a 14-year-old girl during a board trip to visit our programs in El Salvador. She told me that one day she “will be the first female president of El Salvador.” This is the lifelong confidence that participation in one of our programs has inspired in this young woman, and it’s exceptional. INCLUSIVE We are successful because we believe that the whole boat rises when men and boys are part of the change. You can see the power of that approach on page 30 where we meet

STANDING STRONG In Senegal, the Honourable Harjit Sajjan (pictured above) and I met youth advocate Khadyja Sy. We spoke about how hard-won gains in gender equity are now in jeopardy because of the pandemic and other factors. After the trip, we wrote a joint op-ed about this issue. There’s great joy in seeing youth have such a powerful impact. You can read about the $72 million Strengthening Health Outcomes for Women project in Senegal on page 36. Senegal was one of the five countries included in this project, our largest one to date. THE LONG AND THE SHORT OF IT We’ve created our most comprehensive Annual Report ever. It showcases our impact-related storytelling and areas of expertise. You can read the digest version (44 pages) or this full version at plancanada.ca/AnnualReport .

“Paula reminded us that when you teach one child, her circle of friends learns, her family learns, her village learns and her country learns.” – Patsy shares the advice she received from Paula Caldwell St-Onge, who was the Canadian ambassador in Haiti when she and the board visited in 2016.

Patsy Anderson Board Chair Plan International Canada

Lindsay Glassco President & Chief Executive Officer Plan International Canada


*This is a pseudonym.

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This is what we do We strive to create a world where children, especially girls, learn, lead, decide and thrive. We tackle the root causes of gender inequality. We work with local governments and partners to advocate for children and develop programs that support them in their right to get an education and be healthy and protected from violence. We develop children’s leadership skills and their ability to earn a living when they grow up. We’re also there for them when crises strike. And we stay with them to help build a healthy, safe and sustainable life. To achieve these goals, our programs focus on our five priority areas of expertise.

This Is Us






United Kingdom








voices to ensure that girls are included in decision making that affects their lives. More on page 48 .

1. EDUCATION We help local education authorities and communities to ensure that children and young adults have access to a quality education. We provide preschool classes as well as vocational and entrepreneurial training and help students catch up if they have been out of school due to conflict or crisis. We’re experts at providing education in emergencies. More on page 20. 2. HEALTH We work with local authorities to strengthen their health care systems. We train community health workers so that they can provide timely, effective and appropriate care to adolescent girls and women. We support reproductive health care services and also help prevent and treat HIV, tuberculosis, malaria, COVID-19 and other illnesses. We help individuals assert their right to access health services and critical care. More on page 28. 3. PROTECTION FROM VIOLENCE We support programs that keep children, especially girls, safe by helping prevent practices such as child, early and forced marriage, female genital mutilation and other gender-based violence. We amplify girls’



Italy Romania


South Korea

United States










Dominican Republic



Hong Kong


Guinea- Bissau

Our programs help youth in Canada (age 14 to 24) deepen their knowledge and develop their advocacy skills around global issues. Internationally, programs like our financial-literacy training and savings and loan groups help build economic empowerment. As with all of our programs, we work with communities and youth-led movements to challenge harmful ideas that prevent gender equality. More on page 54. In emergencies, we provide food and cash vouchers and create safe spaces for children. We deliver education programs, nutritional training and clean water and sanitation. We offer sexual and reproductive health rights services to address increased risks of child marriage, adolescent pregnancy and sexual violence. We also equip communities to protect themselves from economic shocks and increase their resilience to climate change and other challenges. More on page 70. 5. HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE AND RESILIENCE





Guatemala El Salvador

Chad Sudan


Ghana Burkina Faso








South Sudan




Sierra Leone




Papua New Guinea







Central African Republic



Solomon Islands





Zimbabwe Zambia






This is who we are Plan International Canada strives for a just world that advances children’s rights and equality for girls. We stand with children, especially girls, wherever they are oppressed, exploited, left behind or not equally valued. We’re determined optimists, and we will continue to persevere until we are all equal.

This is Who we work with We are a member of a global organization that partners with families, communities, local organizations, supporters and governments. We collaborate with women-led groups and youth councils in shaping the programs. We work to ensure that children, especially girls, are safe, healthy, educated and empowered.

This is where we work Plan International is active in more than 80 countries (see map above). Founded in 1937, it’s now one of the largest charities in the world.

This is what’s next Plan International has a new five-year strategy – All Girls Standing Strong – to reach 200 million children by 2027. Plan International Canada is committed to reaching 30 million of these children . More on page 93.


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A fresh take on child sponsorship Our new video series – featuring young people both behind and in front of the camera – reveals how communities benefit when someone sponsors a child.

How Child Sponsorship Works

WHAT’S NEXT? Plan International’s Child Sponsorship program supports sponsored children and communities to help foster sustainable change. “It’s not one program in isolation,” explains Hayley Riolo, director of child sponsorship at Plan International Canada. “We establish relationships in the sponsorship communities and work with people locally to launch initiatives – everything from education scholarships to school feeding programs. This foundational work acts as a lever to open the door to larger grants from institutional supporters. This means we can offer even more programs and services to a community. We call it the Plan Effect.” 1.3M sponsored children are supported by Plan International globally . We help break down barriers so children can learn, lead, decide and thrive.

had received mobile journalism training from Plan International to produce the mini documentaries, and the result is entertaining, evocative and revelatory. The videos on our interactive map show how child sponsorship opens up opportunities for communities to access additional Plan International programs – from skills and leadership training to sexual health education that helps prevent child, early and forced marriages.

Brandon, 15, in Honduras; Berenice, 13, in Paraguay; Mayday, nine, in Benin . These are just three of the more than 40 children from around the world who took video cameras into their communities in 2022 to share how their lives – and the lives of those around them – changed forever when they became part of Plan International’s Child Sponsorship program. The children teamed up with other young people who




Local leaders and community members are informed of and engaged in the program launch.

Staff monitor impact in the countries over time and share updates with sponsors.

After being invited to work in a country or region, the Plan International team assess whether sponsorship programming can assist and benefit communities.


Projects to support the key objectives as well as country strategies are completed.


Annual meetings with sponsored children and their families are held to discuss progress and challenges.




HONDURAS Brandon became part of the Child Sponsorship program when he was five. He says that life is hard for children in his community, but since Plan International launched the Children’s Clubs, they have educated their parents and community leaders about children’s rights and the importance of education. ”Fighting for our rights as children will always be a battle, but it will be won!” says Brandon.

PARAGUAY Berenice, a sponsored child of five years, talks about how boys get to go to school while girls are sent off to work for wealthy families. But thanks to Plan International programs, she is developing leadership skills and parents in her community are learning about the importance of educating girls. Berenice is intent on becoming a doctor. “No one sees our potential, but we’re changing this,” she says.

BENIN Mayday, who became a sponsored child two years ago, leaps into view, waving enthusiastically at the camera before explaining how Plan International works with local leaders to spread the word about the importance of education and sets up savings groups so mothers can start small businesses to raise money for their children to attend school. The video ends with Mayday’s two thumbs up.



Parents help enrol eligible children who are eager to take part.

Once all of the projects have been successfully completed and are providing key sustainable life improvements, we move our programming to new communities.


Our experts work with children and communities to develop project plans identifying the greatest needs and opportunities.


Participating children are connected with sponsors who are interested in supporting them alongside their families and communities.

Read why Jeff Gunn has been a sponsor for 16 years on page 91.



Approximately 10 to 12 years

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1 OUR EXPERTISE: 20 | 2022 Annual Report


10% of our FY22 program expenditures

ROOMMATES When girls have to walk dangerous and often long distances to get to school, there’s a greater risk they will leave their studies. In Tanzania’s Kibaha district, girls like the ones in this photo live in a dorm built by Plan International. Dorms are part of the Keeping Adolescent Girls in School project. READ THE IMPACT REPORT

We advance children’s right to get an education.



SPOTLIGHT Take 2 Girls get a second chance to study.


Patricia with her daughter

G etting an education is the most powerful way for girls to overcome inequality. It’s also one of the most powerful ways to reduce child marriage and, indirectly, early child-bearing. “Even before COVID-19, millions of children worldwide were unable to attend school,” explains Dr. Tanjina Mirza, chief programs officer at Plan International Canada. “Additional factors such as poverty, gender inequality and emergencies like the hunger crisis, earthquakes, floods and conflict Powerful Lesson Plans We’re experts in creating and developing education programs that help change children’s lives.

Girls in Mali are missing out on school. COVID-19, armed conflict and displacement have created an education crisis. Schools are closed, students are falling behind and youth, especially girls, can’t easily return to their studies after living through such upheaval. That’s why the IMAGINE program in Mali offers alternative learning options so out-of-school children have a greater chance of integrating back into class. Teachers are trained to provide inclusive, psychosocial and conflict-sensitive support. The team also teaches girls that getting an education is their right and a path to a better future. Here are some of the achievements we helped make possible with the support of Global Affairs Canada with matched funds from supporters: 1 , 190 youths participated in home-based learning programs in communities where schools were closed.

The Plan for Girls project in Benin and Cameroon offers hope to girls who have left their studies due to an early pregnancy, gender biases or poverty or because they live too far away from school. The Girls’ Advisory Committee is the backbone of the project, which is funded by Global Affairs Canada with matched funds from Canadian supporters. Seventy-five girls from 60 villages participate in creating Plan for Girls activities. Involving them in the decision making in this manner had not been done before. The committee members, nominated by their peers, develop action plans that include working with authorities on issues related to health, education, violence, employment and gender equality. The goal is to have decision makers listen to and involve adolescent girls so that together they can break the cycle of poverty. Joining the advisory committee in 2022 changed Patricia’s life. After an unplanned pregnancy, she dropped out of school. While she was home with her baby, she was asked to join the committee.

Children living in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, attending an early-learning centre

further prevent girls and boys from accessing this basic right.” A lack of education limits children’s opportunities, and not having a safe place to spend their days leaves them at a heightened risk of disease, abuse and exploitation, child marriage, adolescent pregnancy and more. To break down barriers to accessing education, we: Support early-childhood learning and development programs.

Facilitate accelerated-learning programs, where children who have missed periods of schooling are given a chance to catch up and eventually re-enter formal schools. Establish education savings groups and offer teacher training that addresses the needs of girls. Provide skills training so youth can earn a living to support themselves.

10 , 800 parents in Cameroon attended community sessions and workshops to discuss ways to prioritize girls’ education in 2022.

girls at risk of dropping out of school attended remediation classes to help them continue their studies. out-of-school girls attended accelerated-learning programs to help them re-enter school. teachers at 903 schools were trained to provide inclusive, psychosocial and conflict-sensitive support to students.

10 , 874

She began to participate in activities that raised her awareness about her rights, which include the right to get an education. “I felt confident that I could succeed,” she says, “and that’s what convinced me to go back to school.” Today, Patricia plans to finish her studies and enroll in secretarial training.




The desire to study is there – but not the means. “That’s why this gift is so meaningful,” notes Emma Patterson, director of Gifts of Hope at Plan International Canada. “It provides girls in low-income countries with the support they need to continue their schooling. This

gives them choices about a future that doesn’t just include marriage and motherhood.” And they’re not the only ones who benefit. When girls are educated, it helps their parents, brothers, sisters, communities – everyone. All they need is the chance to study.

2 , 274

$288 , 024 In 2022, the $295 Send a Girl to School gift raised: (32% YOY increase)



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ward to figure out what could be done to help more girls stay – and succeed – in school. With parents’ support, they decided to rent a place near the school where Rehema and 15 other girls could stay. Today, her commute is five minutes, and she is no longer exhausted or harassed. In addition to this housing initiative, the project team worked with the local government and schools to establish a zero-tolerance policy for all forms of gender-based violence. Community guards were assigned to patrol the areas where young women live and travel to and from their studies. “Now that I live close to school, I have more time to study and get my homework done,” shares Rehema. “This will help me improve my performance, and I look forward to passing the Form Two National Examination and planning for more schooling after that.” “I didn’t have time to study because I had to fetch water, collect firewood and help with the cooking.” – Rehema

TANZANIA report card

Impact Spotlight

the situation

More than 30% of children age 14 to 17 are not enrolled in secondary school in Tanzania, and only one in four girls completes her education.

It’s difficult for girls to get an education. One of the hurdles they face is the long distances they have to travel to get to school. On the way, they are exposed to harassment and are at increased risk of sexual assault. Parents try to ensure their safety by keeping them at home. The Keeping Adolescent Girls in School project in Tanzania, which is supported by Global Affairs Canada with matched funds from our supporters, is helping more girls and young women stay in school.

Rehema’s daily commute to school took two hours each way. Along the route, she often experienced sexual harassment and verbal abuse. When she arrived home at night, it was time to help with household chores. “When I returned from school, I was extremely tired,” she says. The physical and emotional toll made attending school a significant challenge for Rehema and many girls living in Tanzania. In January 2022, the Keeping Adolescent Girls in School project team met with local leaders in Rehema’s HomeRoom Rehema is finally safe and free to focus on her studies. What’s the one intervention that made all the difference? STORIES OF CHANGE

what we’ve achieved so far

• 361 community leaders and 35 government officials worked with families, communities and government staff to advocate for adolescent girls’ rights to get an education and to access sexual and reproductive health services. • 118 community discussions were held to raise

awareness about the importance of girls’ education, gender equality and sexual and reproductive health rights.

• 236 education savings group kits were given to parents to help families develop the financial ability to support girls’ education. • 118 community facilitators were selected to launch and run adolescent Champions of Change clubs, where girls learn about their rights and how to advocate for gender equality.


Rehema with her classmates

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STORIES OF CHANGE From Setbacks to backpacks Latifa is back in class – and she’s taking charge.


Suggestion boxes that help children share honest feedback have been set up at schools in many countries, including Tanzania (pictured) and Burkina Faso.

For children forced to leave school because of conflict, displacement or poverty, rejoining the classroom is only the first step. The physical and emotional trauma they may have experienced affects their ability to learn. That’s why the Safer Schools in Burkina Faso project (FASST) prioritizes safe, inclusive learning environments. The 4.5-year, $16.1 million project is funded by Global Affairs Canada with matched funds from supporters. It began in December 2019 and ends in May 2024.

So far, we have set up 88 suggestion boxes in different schools in the area

After armed groups attacked Latifa’s home and her family lost their livestock, which they depended on for income, she stepped up to help her parents. Latifa, who’s one of five children, understood the financial stress her parents were now experiencing and accepted her father’s decision to take her out of school. But she never stopped longing for the day when she would be back in class. With financial assistance from the Safer Schools in Burkina Faso (FASST) project, she was able to return to her studies. Her mother is thrilled about her daughter’s achievements. “Some girls drop out because their parents think a girl’s place is to stay at home, learn to clean and get married,” says Samira. “I want to encourage parents to allow girls to stay in school and refuse to let them be married when they are young. I hope that the FASST project will be able to support many other young girls like my daughter.”

and we have received 2,216 suggestions from the students.” – Lompo, primary school principal

the situation

• In 2020, more than 857,000 children were out of school. • The secondary - school enrolment rate is only 29%. • The literacy rate for adults age 15 to 24 is only 58%.

Lompo is amazed by the improvements he has seen in his students’ morale and academic performance since the suggestion boxes were created. “This is the first time that students have been able to complain about the way they are treated in school,” he explains. “Pupils are increasingly trusting their teachers and actively participating in classes. My colleagues avoid using insults against children, and we have referred children for psychological care.” Lompo is grateful for the opportunity to make his school safe and supportive for students. “I personally thank Plan International and the FASST project for making it possible to correct some shortcomings at the school,” he says.

STORIES OF CHANGE Safety box Suggestion boxes ensure that students’ voices are heard.

What we’ve achieved so far

• 36,465 girls are enrolled in schools and accelerated- learning programs. The goal is to reach 63,000+ children by May 2024. • 26,000+ girls have benefited from the Nutritious School Feeding Program. • 877 girls from displaced families have received cash transfers so they can continue their education. • 405 godmothers mentor 2,102 adolescent girls. They are trusted leaders who are trained to provide psychosocial support and guidance on everything from menstruation to healthy relationships to the importance of education.

Schools should be safe places where children can learn and grow. Unfortunately, not all teachers understand this. “In the past, it was difficult for me to convince teachers that whipping, insulting or mocking students is not a solution for good learning,” says Lompo, the principal of a public primary school in the Est region of Burkina Faso. In many schools, there was no way for anyone to find out what was really happening to students behind closed classroom doors.

After consulting with students, the FASST team set up suggestion boxes in the schools so children could report instances of abuse and teachers could be held accountable for unacceptable behaviour. Complaints are dealt with based on their urgency. For example, if they are related to violence, they are immediately assigned to a FASST protection advisor while broader feedback is taken to school-management committees.

TRACKING IMPACT We provide supporters with regular Impact Reports that update them on the progress of the project. We share program activities, interventions and stories of change, like this one from Latifa. Click the cover image to read this report on the Safer Schools in Burkina Faso (FASST) project.

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2 OUR EXPERTISE: health 28 | 2022 Annual Report

47% of our FY22 program expenditures

HEALTHY BEGINNINGS Health care workers, like midwives, received training to provide sexual, reproductive, maternal and newborn health care in Bolivia through the Plan International Canada ARRIBA (Achieving Reproductive Rights in Bolivian Adolescents) project. We supplied 50 facilities with examination tables, stethoscopes, blood pressure monitors and other medical supplies. We also sent beds, baby blankets, personal protective equipment (PPE) and safe waste-disposal containers to 50 delivery rooms.

We advance children’s right to lead healthy lives.



Pulse Check Every day, millions of children, adolescents and women are at risk because they are unable to assert their rights and access quality health care. We’re working to change that. Here’s how.


We love acronyms, especially if they have a double meaning. Take ARRIBA (Achieving Reproductive Rights in Bolivian Adolescents): The word is also Spanish for “above.” Our goal with this program is to work with community groups to help adolescents rise “above” by helping them understand their sexual and reproductive health rights. What does that mean? It means they can make free and informed decisions related to their sexuality, have safe sexual experiences and access reproductive health services. It also means that they can choose whether, when and whom to marry. We’re at the four-year mark of this five-year program, and we’ve reached 20,000 Bolivians, including 9,000 adolescent girls, 7,000 boys and 1,700 health care providers. 12 , 500 adolescents learned about their sexual and reproductive health rights and how to prevent gender-based violence. Liz is one of those adolescents. “One of my biggest dreams is for my town to be a place where no one experiences sexism,” says the 16-year-old Champions of Change Club participant. “All the [gender-equality and self-esteem] training sessions and workshops I attended have changed my way of seeing things. I understand my rights now.”

How do latrines help keep children in school? WATCH THE VIDEO

G lobally, countless deaths could be prevented if affordable health services and interventions were more readily available for everyone, especially women and girls. “The poorer that people are, the less likely they are to receive health care,” says Dr. Tanjina Mirza, chief programs officer at Plan International Canada. “The face of poverty is female, with girls and women disproportionally affected. Our projects support quality maternal, newborn and child health services, sexual and reproductive health rights, safe water and hygiene as well as the prevention and treatment of HIV, tuberculosis and malaria.”

To help strengthen health systems, we: Support the rehabilitation of health facilities. Improve the availability and management of medicines and equipment.

SPOTLIGHT Mini WASH cycle Small but mighty projects have a big impact.

Leonard Mpofu, and his daughter Sandengomusa, can talk about topics that some consider taboo, like menstruation and HIV/AIDS. The Adolescent Girls and Young Women project, done in partnership with The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, in Zimbabwe, helps to shatter sexual and reproductive health stigmas and strengthens girls’ relationships with their fathers.

Our WASH (water, sanitation and hygiene) programs are part of multi-million-dollar projects, but we created a $300,000 three- year project in Cambodia with supporter Michael J. Waring. The goal of the Kids in Class Fund was to improve the WASH conditions in 136 villages, 75 schools and 16 communes in the Siem Reap province in northwestern Cambodia. “We wanted to achieve open-defecation-free [ODF] status, which means 100% of households have access to an individual or shared latrine,” explains George Yap, a WASH advisor at Plan International Canada. The result? “In 2022, we achieved that in all but 15 villages. And in those 15 villages, the

coverage now ranges from 62% to 98%. These results show the powerful impact these smaller projects can have. Everyone benefits, especially children, who are at risk of developing diarrhea from drinking water contaminated with fecal matter. If they’re sick, they miss school.

Train health care providers to deliver gender- and adolescent-responsive and inclusive health services. Bring health services and information closer to remote communities and vulnerable populations.


Learn more about Michael J. Waring on page 88.



32 , 375 students, teachers and community members who now, after three years, have improved access to clean water and education about proper hygiene.

The funds raised in 2022 supported transportation costs and training for health workers to address misconceptions related to COVID-19. “Our supporters connected with this gift,” explains Emma Patterson, director of Gifts of Hope at Plan International Canada.

“We wanted to ensure that people in remote and poorly resourced communities could access information about COVID-19 prevention and vaccination. It was our most popular gift last year and the most popular gift since we launched Gifts of Hope more than 15 years ago.”

$925 , 179 The $50 COVID-19 vaccine rollout gift raised:


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