96% of of the Roma, Ashkali & Egyptian communities in Kosovo do not complete compulsory education - a cause and an effect of poverty, exclusion, and poor health. Education is the only way to break the vicious cycle for families and communities, and after working for over 4 years to get Roma, Ashkali & Egyptian children to primary school, we have been asked by members of the communities in Fushe Kosove to open pre-school for their younger kids. Help us say yes to their dreams for their children!
The terrible rates of access to education and staying on in school among the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities in Kosovo mean that the parents of today's children of pre-school age in Neighbourhoods 28 & 29 of Fushe Kosove are likely to be illiterate. They generally earn their money from begging (women) or scavenging through garbage (men), offering grim life chances and poor life choices to their children. No free state kindergarten education is available.
We know that the most effective learning is done at the youngest age. Our kindergarten will get children ready for success at school, and will mean children from illiterate and malnourished homes can still start education with confidence. Parents - especially mothers - will be supported through the project with adult literacy classes. The request for this kindergarten has come from the community themselves, & it will be led by the community, with expert educational input where necessary.
We will start with places for 30 children at the kindergarten. We anticipate 100% registration rates in primary school and similarly high staying-on rates from this group, unlike the patchy registrations and high drop-out typical of the rest of the community. The power of kindergarten in providing strong foundations for later success means that a small intervention now will have a lifelong impact on these children. And by supporting their mothers with literacy we will support whole families.