We have recently partnered with Windle Trust International on a vocational training programme in Kakuma Refugee Camp, Kenya. So far we have raised £9,000 through the BIG GIVE challenge to support this initiative with the building of an IT facility at the camp.
The secondary schools in Kalobeyei and Kakuma Refugee Camps in Northern Kenya, all of which are managed by Windle, provide a traditional high school education using the Kenya standard curriculum. This works well for those who have the opportunity for further study but does little to give technical and livelihood skills to the majority of children whose formal education ends at the high school level.
The Proposed SOlution
In order to equip secondary schools students with technical skills Windle plans to “vocationalise” the secondary schools it manages. We have already done this in schools in Uganda and would like to pilot the idea in the Kalobeyei Refugee Settlement in Kenya.
Windle will offer refugees in the first and second years of high school the opportunity to study at weekends during term time for a vocational skills at Vocational Training Colleges in Kalobeyei (run by the Norwegian Refugee Council) and the Don Bosco Training Centre in Kakuma Camp (run by the Catholic Church). The students will continue with their academic study but this programme will ensure that as many students as possible will also have a certified vocational skills when they leave school. We expect that this will greatly enhance their ability to access employment or to earn a living themselves on a self-employed basis. We will closely monitor the impact of the pilot and seek to expand the programme if the project proves to be as cost-effective and transformative as we expect.
In the refugee camps girls are particularly vulnerable. A focus of this pilot intervention will be to equip refugee girls with skills that they can use when they complete high school and it will be an aim of this project that at least half the beneficiaries will be girls.
Creating self-employment opportunities is not without challenges and Windle will work with our own alumni and the wider community to assist the secondary school graduates to form business groups and to identify opportunities for using their skills.
We continue to fundraise for this programme and hope to reach a total of $20,000 this year to enable a good number of students to participate in this important pilot project.