This "Rwenena Kids" program of SAFECO is held at the remote Rwenena (Ruh-NENN-uh) Primary School in the Ruzizi Plain, S. Kivu. We have worked with the village. The program provides tuition & supplies for 60 vulnerable children as well as uniforms, supplementary after-school instruction, and sport-for-peace education for the school's 120 students. We enable a start in breaking the cycle of poverty and promote acceptance of all community members. We are aligned with UN Global Goal #4.
In DRC, 1 of 4 children never start primary school. Only 60% complete this level - 30% for girls. Vulnerable children need extra support because many of them are rejected or even abandoned. Income generation for paying school fees has been rare. Rwenena - part of the volatile Ruzizi Plain - was hard hit during the Congo Wars. Ethnic-based tensions and distrust remain between those who claim deep Congolese origins and "outsiders" who have resided in and become citizens of DRC for decades.
Along with 30 earlier sponsored students, from fall 2016, we will support a new class of 30 first-grade students through July 2022 for comprehensive primary education, pending funding. Half of the school's 120 parents now pay basic tuition fees; some have decreased their children's chores to increase study time. All welcome our new, school-wide sport-peace component, which will provide a safe place to move, play, heal, gain confidence, and learn mutual acceptance through team building.
Even the youngest students realize the path to a better life comes through education. Our 60 students include an intentional mix of ethnic groups, genders, and those from stigmatized backgrounds. Along with classroom education, our replicable sport-peace component benefits students and parents alike. Guided parent participation - including through their own soccer games - offers increased mutual acceptance and respect, enabling a more stable peace for their educated children and the community.
This project has provided additional documentation in a DOCX file (projdoc.docx).
DRC low education rate, by Gordon Brown
Description of Global Goal #4: Education for All