As children around the world go back to school after the Christmas holidays and we go back to work and study we are delighted that our 37 sponsor children are among them. School in Uganda starts back next week and all our sponsor children are ready to go with their unifroms and school materials at hand. However this time of year also makes me think of the children we work with who are not as fortunate and are still waiting to have a chance to go to school. Here at KCK we work with up to 4000 children each week, some of which go to school, others are sponsored whilst the majority find it difficult to afford fees, uniforms and school materials. Since we are a growing organisation and many of our children still cannot access school we have set up our Encouraging Education project to help these children have a chance to learn.
The UN convention for the Rights of the Child states that every child has the right to receive an education. At KCK we believe that education is a tool that can lift people out of poverty. In addition to this we believe that children should be given the opportunity to dream of a better future for themselves and we are so encouraged by the enthusiasm we see in these little lives to learn and succeed in their education.
The state of Uganda does provide ‘free’ schooling. However, the reality is that there are many hidden costs, such as paying for uniforms, books, desks, chairs and even the electricity bills of the school. In addition to this, most state funded schools are located in rural areas and access to these free schools is out of reach for children who live in the urban slums of Kampala.This coupled with the overcrowding of classes and absenteeism of teachers due to poor pay and management in Uganda means that children do not receive the best education they can and many go completely without schooling. Our Encouraging Education programme consists of an after school educational support programme and a termly supply of school materials.
Our Encouraging Education programme is run by qualified local teachers who volunteer their time to help the children in their community. Classes run Monday to Friday from 4 to 6pm and are currently attended by approximately 100 children. This allows children who do not attend school to have a chance to learn in a school like environment and also to receive a hot, nutritional meal every evening. In addition to this it allows children who do attend school to have extra tuition and gives them a space to ask questions. Ugandan schools average child to teacher ratios are among the highest in Sub Saharan Africa (UNESCO) meaning that children do not get the attention or help that they need to progress and therefore many children can slip through the cracks and not move forward in their learning.
So as children go back to school officially, our KCK Encouraging Education Programme will also go back to the chalk board and allow children who have no chance to learn to have the opportunity to learn Maths, Science, literacy and more even though they do not attend school. If you would like to change the life of one of these kids and allow them to enroll in school officially to take their learning to the next level and allow them a better future please contact us to become a child sponsor for just £25 per month.