In Somalia, the primary school enrollment ratio is among the world’s lowest–70% or 3 million children of 4.4 million school-age children are out of school. Only 17% of children living in rural areas or IDPs settlements are enrolled in primary schools. According to the Somalia Education cluster, education gaps and needs are largely from a lack of adequate learning facilities, teachers, basic emergency teaching and learning materials, insecurity, lack of food/water, and limited WASH facilities to keep children in schools.
Limited learning spaces, limited teachers support, limited learning kits, and CEC structures were identified as the education needs in the Southwest State of Somalia. As a result of displacement of IDPs into Baidoa has meant that the number of schools have reported increased enrolment, placing a further strain on already limited resources used by the host and IDP communities. In response to this, READO with support from SHF is improving access to education by supporting four schools in Baidoa rural through an integrated project titled “Integrated response and life-saving intervention of Food Security, Education, Emergency Health, Nutrition and WASH to drought-affected rural communities in Baidoa District of Bay Region”.
“We lacked integrated projects focused on crucial community needs and this was our biggest concern as regional states line ministry. We appreciate READO and SHF for this life-saving intervention in Education, Food Security, Emergency Health, Nutrition, and WASH complementing each other. This project has come at the right time to help the crisis-affected populations of concern in the South West State of Somalia“Southwest State Education Minister, Hon Minister Mohamed Abukar.
In this intervention, READO in collaboration with Ministry of Education identified four community education facilities namely Lowilay, Awdinle, Daryel, and Imamu-Malik community schools in Baidoa rural areas. So far, 34 Community Education Committees (CECs) from the four targeted community education facilities have been fully trained for a period of 2 days. The training aimed at the following:
- Enhancing their skills to enable them to effectively participate in school management
- Helping them understand their roles and responsibilities, to mobilize resources for the schools.
- Enrolment of out of school children and on how to involve the community in supporting and sustaining the schools.
READO also distributed learning materials/kits (books, pencils, pens, sharpeners, erasers, geometrical sets, rulers, and school bags) to 1,266 children in four community Education facilities in the targeted areas. Furthermore, READO is providing weekly water trucking (10,000 liters) to four target community schools. The water trucking is ongoing and this will be done for a period of eight months. READO has also identified sites for the construction of 13 school latrines in three targets of community schools of Lowilay, Aawdiinle, and Imamu-Malik Primary school and provision of support monthly stipends for 10 teachers during the period of project implementations
Moreover, READO has conducted four mass community awareness sessions on the importance of educating children and this has greatly increased new enrollment in all the rural schools where READO is operating within the South West State of Somalia. 45% of the population supported were
young girls, while 55% were boys – This is a significant improvement in the number of girls attending rural educational centers, consequently supporting girl child education.
School principals, parents, and the project beneficiaries are all grateful to SHF and READO for the concerted effort and timely support to the four schools in the South West State. “Education Transforms Societies”.
We are very much indebted to have access to these free services,” stated Abdullahi Adan Imaamu Malik School Principal.