THE EDGE IN KYAKA II
In Uganda, thousands of Congolese refugee children in Kyaka II refugee camp are lacking vital opportunities for Early Childhood Development .
Host to the fastest growing refugee crisis in the world, Uganda is Africa’s leading refugee hosting country, and the third largest in the world. It is estimated that Uganda’s total refugee and asylum-seeking population is now over 1.4 million, the largest in its history. Over a quarter of these arrivals have fled conflict, disease and human rights abuses in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Despite being leaders in refugee policy, services in Uganda are overstretched and UNHCR is calling on international actors to step up their response.
Kyaka II refugee camp receives 7% of arrivals, with over 65% being children who often suffer extreme trauma after witnessing the brutality of war and displacement. They face serious child protection risks and have nowhere safe to go during the day.
A number of NGOs are providing primary education in Kyaka II, but early years education provision is limited for thousands of the youngest refugee children at a vital time in their development.
WHAT WE ARE DOING TO HELP
Supporting 30 refugee communities in Kyaka II camp to replicate our model of best practice, ensuring high quality, cost-effective Early Childhood Development provision for nearly 5,000 children.
Nearly 5,000 of the youngest Congolese children in Kyaka II refugee settlement are beginning to access early childhood education, trauma care, play and key health interventions, ensuring they have the best possible start in life.
Through a pilot year we provided top quality ECD training to 24 refugee teachers in eight centres and began refurbishment of a central resource centre as a model for a further 30 buildings.
In the next two years work will be replicated and, in partnership with the Haileybury Youth Trust, we have started to construct and rebuild the centres in all 30 communities, so they will be resourced to provide quality early learning opportunities for around 5,000 children.
All centres will be safe spaces, with trained teachers from both the refugee and local communities. This ensures children have the opportunity to learn in their own language with familiar trusted adults.
A core of this work will be the development of strong volunteer Centre Management Committees (CMC’s) to ensure sustainable community ownership.
During lockdown, we've been ensuring children still have safe access to education by delivering home learning packs and providing radio lessons.