What Is The Shona Project?

The Shona Project is an awesome non-profit that’s won multiple awards for its work. We’re all about educating, empowering, and inspiring girls living in Ireland, so they grow into strong, confident, and curious young women. Created by girls for girls, we make sure every girl in Ireland feels seen, understood, supported, and valued. We believe every girl has the potential to achieve her dreams and live a happy, healthy life, as long as they have the right tools and encouragement.


The Junior Ambassador Programme

We kicked off our Junior Ambassador programme (Jambo) in September 2022, and it has grown massively over the last couple of years. We’re inviting schools to nominate 1-3 students total, each from different year groups. These students should be in 4th, 5th, or 6th year for the 2024/25 school year.  This helps us build a line of succession for our Ambassador Programme within your school. Ambassadors need to be able to commit to attending monthly online meetings (evening time). Through our programme, we support these students as leaders who promote kindness, positivity, inclusion, and resilience. Our long-term goal? To have an Ambassador in every school in Ireland!


What Is Required From Schools? 

Teachers are asked to nominate Jambos and check in with them periodically during the year. We would ask that nominating teachers support Jambos as they look to introduce Shona initiatives in their schools. The Shona Project will keep teachers updated on the programme throughout the year so that they know what’s happening. 


What Does A Jambo Do?

Jambos will be nominated by their schools because they believe that she is a leader who is kind, inclusive, motivated, trustworthy and confident in her ability to win over even her quietest classmate. We welcome nominations from 4th, 5th and 6th years for 2023/24.

Here’s what we ask of our ambassadors:

  • Welcome the incoming first years in their school, tell them about the importance of kindness and inclusivity in the school, and instil the values that both Shona and the school believe in (we provide a short speech for them to give, with our support and the support of their teachers).
  • Spread awareness of Shona’s online resources and highlight competitions and other initiatives throughout the year.
  • Attend monthly online meet-ups where they will meet brilliant role models, and discuss the issues which are important to them. Jambos are expected to attend at least 6 out of the 9 meetings over the academic year. Attendance is recorded in these meetings. 
  • Engage with peers regularly via our WhatsApp Group.
  • Join Everything Club; an optional group that meets on a monthly basis to have the chats about different themes including mental health, culture and the power of sisterhood
  • Get involved in idea generation for everything Shona-related, including writing articles, creating content and developing creative projects.
  • Initiate, plan and fulfil at least one Shona Project Programme during the 2023/2024 Academic Year. They could assist in arranging for us to come in to facilitate a workshop, have Transition Years attend SHINE Festival or get creative with our Safe Bathrooms challenge. Guidance will be provided on how to initiate these in schools. 
  • The Jambo should also make the whole school staff aware of their role as a Shona Jambo If confident enough, they could do this in a staff meeting or simply compose an email that can be distributed to all staff.


What Does A Jambo Get In Return?

  • An invitation to monthly/virtual meet-ups to form connections and talk about what is going on in the lives of teenagers. The meet-ups will also be attended by our network of positive role models and leaders; and will cover topics such as leadership, social activism, confidence, teamwork etc.
  • Spread kindness and positivity amongst peers.
  • Make new friends.
  • Opportunities to get involved in different and exciting events/projects run by our team, such as Shine Festival, being on national radio and our annual Shona Summit.
  • Access to our growing network of mentors if they have questions related to career, subject choice, and other life questions.
  • References and help when applying for jobs, courses and internships.
  • Experience growth in their communication skills, enhance their natural ability to lead and embrace the opportunity to network with those from different backgrounds.
  • The opportunity to be part of a movement creating huge positive change in Ireland and to play a part in creating the world they want to live in.
  • When their time in school ends, our Jambos can apply to continue their journey with us as Senior Ambassadors (Sambos).


They Will Also Get…

A Free Shona Goodie Pack, that is jam packed full of useful information and merchandise that can be used to promote The Shona Project in schools.


How To Get Involved…

As a school, you can decide how you would like the Jambo to be selected. This could be simply selecting a student whom you think is perfect for the role or putting a call out to a year group for nominees and conducting short interviews to choose the candidate. Selection is entirely up to school staff as we cherish and trust that you know your community of girls best! 


Nominate Your School’s Junior Ambassadors Here.


But, don’t just take our word for it, here’s what Mairead had to say:

The hope and determination that everyone involved with the Shona Project displays is a constant inspiration to meI truly believe we could all achieve incredible things if we were freed from the idea that because we cannot change everything at once, we can change nothing, and it is my greatest hope that more and more young people can find something that inspires them to keep fighting for the world we all deserve as Shona has done for me

Following nomination, The Shona Project will seek permission from a parent/guardian will be required to add Junior Ambassadors to certain social media groups and communications channels. 

If you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Education Manager, Natasha, at natasha@shona.ie

Supported By

Our Pro bono Partners