The current global pandemic has created universal challenges to accessing education that millions have never faced before. This summer, children all round the world are getting ready to return to a very different school environment.
This summer also marks 30 years since the beginning of Children on the Edge. We’ve been overcoming barriers to education for the most marginalised since 1990, so for us, lockdown has been just one more hurdle to jump. The children we work with have been amongst the hardest hit, so we’ve been providing regular support and finding creative ways to get them back to school.
In Kyaka II refugee settlement, Uganda we have been piloting the use of radio lessons to ensure the youngest Congolese refugee children can still have access to their early years education. Near the start of the Ugandan lockdown, all education services in the camp were shut. We started a home-learning programme for teachers so they can continue their full training and take their university exams in January.
The children have been working with our resource officers and teachers to work through the Ugandan Early Childhood Development (ECD) home learning curriculum. Activity packs are delivered once a month with pencils and crayons to keep the children learning. It has also been translated into suitable languages and is accompanied by a parents guide. Follow up visits from the teachers will also serve as a means to check on children’s safety and wellbeing while they are unable to attend the centres.
After unsuccessful attempts to get learning materials to the children by phone, we worked with Ubongo to conduct a month’s trial of delivering lessons via radio airtime, two times a week.
When we assessed the impact of the radio lessons at the end of the pilot, even with little to no promotion, already 67% of children interviewed said they had been listening to the radio lessons. 93% of these children said they enjoyed listening and many parents described how beneficial it was for the children during this lockdown period.
Could you give a monthly gift to help get children back to school?
A gift of £100 (or £8 a month) can help educate a child in a safe space for a whole year and regular monthly donations ensure that we can provide reliable support through uncertain times like these. Your support can help us get over 15,000 children back to school during this pandemic. We’ll keep you updated with how your money is being spent and always use your donations to help those most in need.