Last week as Irish students went back to school, students in Kenya also returned to the classroom!

This is the final term of the school year for Kenyan students with end-of-year exams just around the corner. For many students, especially those in the communities that Aidlink works with, returning to school is a challenge.

Children, particularly girls, face many barriers to their education and those forced to miss out on school find themselves stuck in a cycle of poverty.

Aidlink works to break this cycle and make education more accessible and inclusive for all children.

A formal evaluation of our projects in Kajiado County, Kenya revealed heart-warming results with a big and positive impact on children, their families and their communities.

We assessed the impact of our work, coordinated by long-term partner organisation the Girl Child Network (GCN), on 18 target schools, their students and wider communities in Kajiado County, Kenya. The key results from target schools revealed:

  • 20-30% increase in school enrolment
  • 27% reduction in absenteeism among girls
  • 46% increase in the number of girls completing primary school
  • 22% increase in the average score in the Kenyan Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE)
  • 80% of students who sat the KCPE in 2017 continuing on to secondary school

Kajiado County is home to the traditionally nomadic pastoralist Masai tribe. The Masai face a myriad of socio-economic, political and environmental challenges, and for women and girls these are even greater. The patriarchal and polygamist nature of Masai society means women are disempowered. Gender Based Violence (GBV) is highly prevalent, as are harmful cultural practices such as Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), child marriage and early pregnancy. The low social status of girls in Masai culture has a significant impact on their access to education.

The positive results received from our evaluation have encouraged us to expand this programme to other areas, with projects already underway in 9 schools in Turkana, Northern Kenya.

Support Aidlink this ‘Back to School’ season and help us to continue our work breaking the barriers to children’s education in Kenya and Uganda.

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Read the full Impact Assessment report here.

Read about our work on FGM in Kajiado County here.

Photo: Students from Endoinyo Enker Primary School, Kajiado County, Kenya, 2019.