Building A Resilient Education System for Refugees and Host Communities

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Oxfam in Uganda has today launched a four-year project titled “Resilient Learners, Teachers and Education systems in South Sudan and Uganda” aimed at improving and strengthening the non-formal and formal education system, targeting teachers and educators in Uganda refugee settlements and South Sudan communities.

Funded by the European Union through the BRiCE (Building Resilience in Crises through Education) thematic programme, the project will be implemented in both Uganda and South Sudan by a consortium of partners including Oxfam Novib, Oxfam IBIS, Oxfam South Sudan, Oxfam in Uganda, AVSI (both in Uganda and South Sudan), Community Development Initiatives (CDI), Education International (EI), Columbia Global Centers (CGC), Uganda National Teacher’s Union (UNATU), Forum for African Women Educationists Uganda (FAWE-U), and Luigi Giussani Institute of Higher Education (LGIHE). The European Union is financing Oxfam and its consortium partners to the tune of 5,587,375 Euros (about 25b UGX) ) to implement this project aimed to reach 32,600 Learners, 815 Teachers, and many other stakeholders among Parent Teacher Associations (PTA), School Management Committees (SMC) as well as South Sudanese and Ugandan communities.

“The purpose of this project is to address the immediate needs of the targeted communities, while supporting both individuals and systems to become more resilient to crisis, for example by strengthening the adaptability of states, societies, communities and individual to political, economic, environmental or societal pressures,” said Rose Atim, the Head of Programme at Oxfam in Uganda. “It aims at improving the access to quality primary education for learners between the ages of 6 – 25 years in both non- formal and formal education systems to build resilience in their life skills in terms of active citizenship, conflict prevention and technical skills.” she further added. “This will be achieved through the Accelerated Learning Program model for learners, life skill for pregnant and young mothers, ensuring safe learning environments and by improving the skills of teachers to support the target learners by addressing the capacity needs for teacher professional development of primary school teachers.”

The Resilient Learners, Teachers and Education systems in South Sudan and Uganda project will work in Palabek Settlement, Lamwo District in Uganda, and in Emotong State, greater Kopoeta and Central Equatorial State in South Sudan. Among others, the project will provide more robust and continuous support to teachers through the Teachers and Educators Professional Development (TEPD) approach where ideas are adapted through experimentation and reflection and trainings, teachers will learn to respond to needs in conflict and crisis contexts.

Additionally, the project aims to improve the resilience of education systems. “The partners working together on this project will engage directly with learners, teachers and communities to
strengthen education systems in both countries. It will include accelerated education interventions aimed at increasing children's emotional stability, literacy, and life skills,” said Cedric Merel,
EU Head of Cooperation.
He further stated that, “The project will also contribute to strengthening education systems through better consultations with stakeholders and data collection and analysis. Importantly, consortium
members will continuously engage with the government, the district and civil society to ensure the success and sustainability of the project.”

While speaking at the launch, the State Minister for Primary Education, Hon. RoseMary Seninde said, “As a ministry, our mission is to provide for support, guide, coordinate, regulate and promote quality education and sports to all persons in Uganda for national integration, individual and national development. This project fits into this mission through the Accelerated Learning Program and Bridging courses, through life skills models, through models focused on retention of pregnant girls and young mothers, and through training teachers, Parents and Teachers Association and communities on ensuring safe learning environments for the learners and integrating psycho social support for learners whose lives have been disrupted by crisis.”

He applauded Oxfam, the European Union and the consortium partners for implementing a cross boarder project that works towards building the resilience of education systems with the refugee
settlements and host communities.

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About the European Union and
The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 Member States. They decided to link together their know-how, resources and destinies. Together, they have built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedoms. The EU is committed to sharing its achievements and values with countries and peoples beyond its borders. And in fact, over half of all development aid comes from the EU and its Member States, making them collectively the world's largest aid donor. Most aid goes to low-income and least developed countries.

About Oxfam in Uganda
Oxfam’s and partner response program is currently reaching over 227,000 refugees across four districts providing life-saving assistance, clean water, sanitation hygiene including construction of
pit latrines, sustainable livelihoods and integrating gender and protection work. Oxfam and partners are actively engaged in advocacy for sustainable approaches to the refugee response as well as peace building at local level, national, regional and international levels.

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