Build Africa works in rural areas of Kenya and Uganda to improve the quality of education that children receive, and increase the ability of families to secure sustainable livelihoods. School communities and local government work alongside Build Africa to identify and tackle key issues and needs. As a result pupils, parents and teachers are equipped with the appropriate knowledge, skills and resources to provide children with high quality education.
Build Africa’s education program has four key themes:
Early learning and school readiness – Many children are unprepared to begin primary school so are unable to thrive within this new learning environment. Children who begin learning at an early age outperform their peers at school and see positive impacts on their health, nutrition, academic achievement and wellbeing later in life. Therefore Build Africa enables parents to support their children in learning before they begin school and works with teachers so that children receive a high quality and appropriate education in the first few years of primary school.
Improving learning – Build Africa works alongside schools, communities and the local government to ensure children receive a high quality education. This is achieved by improving the quality of teaching children receive, increasing parental engagement in the education of their children, ensuring the school environment is conducive for learning and strengthening the management and governance of the school.
Including girls – Build Africa’s programs aim to see girls and boys receiving equal opportunities and benefits from their education. In many of the regions in which Build Africa works, deep rooted cultural attitudes lead to girls being disadvantaged; their education is not valued and girls are often removed from school to work or assume domestic responsibilities. Therefore Build Africa's projects tackle issues surrounding girls’ right to education, encourage the use of girl friendly teaching methodologies and challenge restrictive cultural practices within the community.
Continuing learning – There are significant barriers which prevent children continuing their education to secondary school or vocational training. Build Africa supports families and pupils to overcome these challenges, such as the opportunity costs of post-primary schooling, negative community attitudes and low levels of academic achievement which hinder children in continuing their learning.
Build Africa has developed its own monitoring tool called “Shule Yetu” (“our school”) that allows schools to review their own progress. At the same time, collecting key performance indicator data from the schools Build Africa works in (e.g. percentage of children repeating years, children with disabilities etc.) has enabled Build Africa to use statistics and evidence to inform the organization's work and ensure that its efforts are focused on the areas most in need.
Build Africa’s education work is complemented by a livelihoods program which enables families to increase incomes and improve food security through microfinance, business skills development and increased agricultural production. When families are able to secure a sustainable livelihood they can afford the financial commitments of their children’s education and provide them with sufficient food and water so that they can concentrate on learning.
By combining work which improves education and secures livelihoods, Build Africa provides over 65,000 children with the opportunity to gain the education they need to improve their quality of life.