Education  Kenya Project #40111

Educating 70+ children in Mathare Slum Kenya

by ChallengeAid
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Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya
Educating 70+ children in  Mathare Slum Kenya

Covid continues to influence what can and can't be done in the informal slum settlements of Kenya and Mathare is no exception. There are still restrictions and most people are aware of not gathering in large groups. Classes at St. Benedicts SoH were revising up and then took exams at the end of September and have now just had a weeks holiday at the start of October. and have since taken there exams. Considering this is a new SoH and that much learning opeortunities were lost during the pandemic this would be a real result to gain creditable results at exam time at the end of the year. Online lessons continue to be delivered by volunteer experienced teachers here in the UK in the Sciences,Maths and now English for at least 1 1/2 hrs each week. Pupils are again responding well and expectations are high.ChallengeAid is ensuring that the is a good stock of past papers over the past 5 years with questions & marking scheme answers in those areas.Two interesting developments are that we have secured 2 new Supervisors to join the current team. There is ongoing training for Supervisors including rules and regulations and good practice policy as well as lectures in Safeguarding policies.These are former pupils who have now left the SoH as pupils but want to give back as Supervisors. The second is that the teachers from nearby Informal Schools are attending the lessons devised for the pupils as they feel that they are gaining themselves from the experience.

As children can gather more freely together more time is being spent on our targeted sports such as cricket,volleyball, rugby and football. Before the pandemic ChallengeAid had won two national TV competitions for Informal Slum Settlement children winning the top two spots in two consecutive years. The competition was not held last year but there is a real expectation that that we can do well again this year with St. Benedicts especially training twice a week at all ages and genders.SoH's developing the talent of those who are keenest.We have also engaged another Chess trainer who is developing the talent of the Supervisors so that they will be better equipped to coach the pupils themselves.

Another key development since the last report is that we have engaged with a peripatetic art teacher who is going around the schools training the best & keenest pupils. We are hoping that the fruits of this work will soon become available to view. 

 The "new normality".has not been fully achieved as yet but it seems that the rhythym of life is starting to return to the environment but having said that there appears to be a new deadlier version of the Virus circulating which continues to take it's toll.

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Despite some civil unrest and objections to curfew lockdowns schooling has just about returned to normal. There are still restrictions and most people are aware of not gathering in large groups. Classes at St. Benedicts SoH were revising up to March March and have since taken there exams. We are currently awaiting the outcome of these exams and the opportunity to rank them against other SoH but the forecast is for these exams to be at least comparable with other SoH. Considering this is a new SoH and that much learning opeortunities were lost during the pandemic this would be a real result.As discussed in the last report online lessons delivered by volunteer experienced teachers here in the UK in the Sciences and Maths for at least 1 1/2 hrs each week, have restarted with the new cohort of students.Pupils are again responding well and expectations are high.ChallengeAid is ensuring that the is a good stock of past papers over the past 5 years with questions & marking scheme answers in those areas.Two interesting developments are that we have secured 2 new Supervisors to join the current team. These are pupils who have now left the SoH as pupils but want to give back as Supervisors. The second is that the teachers are attending the lessons devised for the pupils as they feel that they are gaining themselves from the experience.

As children can gather more freely together more time is being spent on our targeted sports such as cricket,volleyball, rugby and football. Before the pandemic ChallengeAid had won two national TV competitions for Informal Slum Settlement children winning the top two spots in two consecutive years. The competition was not held last year but there is a real expectation that that we can do well again this year with St. Benedecticts especially training twice a week at all ages and genders.

 The "new normality".has not been fully achieved as yet but it seems that the rhythym of life is starting to return to the environment.

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Since the last report civil society in Kenya has started to returned to more normal levels of activities. There are still restrictions and most people are aware of not gathering in large groups. However classes at St. Benedicts SoH have been gathering together since Christmas and the Classes that are stting exams in March are working together with there revision time. There have been some online lessons delivered by volunteer experienced teachers here in the UK in the Sciences and Maths for at least 1 1/2 hrs each week.Pupils have been responding well and expectations are high.ChallengeAid is ensuring that the is a good stock of past papers over the past 5 years with questions & marking scheme answers in those areas.

Less time has been spent on reacreational activities with games taking a back seat until everything returns to normal but certainly chess continues at full staeam with the children of all ages cultivating a real passion and desire to achieve. Before the pandemic ChallengeAid had won two national TV competitions for Informal Slum Settlement children winning the top two spots in two consecutive years. The copmpetition was not held last year but there is a real expectation that that we can do well again this year.

Normality is resuming also with all the Supervisors,including those from St. Benedicts attending Supervisor meetings and getting back into a routine and unified approach in which all the children can get back to the "new normality".

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St. Benedict was fully operational before the lockdown of all schools by the Kenyan Government and was immediately seeing some hugely positive results.

In December 2019 ten children took the Kenyan Primary Certificate of Education.  Considering that this School of Hope has been operational for less than a year, the results were hugely positive.  The average score was 306.6 / 500.  Considering that St. Benedict is a School of Hope where homeless street children can find refuge and are fostered out to homes, it proves that given an opportunity, these children can thrive.  The nearest Government school, Old Mathare Primary, had an average score of 217 / 500 which means that the work that St. Benedict is doing has allowed the young people in the School of Hope an almost 50% value added level of attainment.  The reasons for this are many and varied.  The children appear grateful just to have an opportunity to escape from what appears to be a hopeless situation.  Most of our Schools of Hope have two or three supervisors.  Here at St. Benedict there are four, all of whom are educated to university level, trained as social workers and have emerged out of the streets themselves.  Having experienced what is possible, they are hugely motivated to show others who are in a similar situation to what they experience themselves, the way. Additionally the School of Hope is participating in everything that ChallengeAid provides such as talent competitions, chess, life skills, music, drama, football, rugby, cricket and volleyball.

The Schools lockdown ended this week and pupils are now returning to school. Mathare has also been under a curfew which has made evening lessons impossible.

Hopefully as from this week we will be back on track and resuming the positive work that was clearly evident before lockdown & curfew.

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Unfortunately with the Covid 19 pandemic much of Kenya is not only in lockdown but also in curfew. government Schools have shut and as a consequence we have been advised that the Schools of Hope should also be closed down.There has been constant communication between our organisation in Nairobi (ChallengeAid Africa) by email & phone contact with our volunteer supervisors.When lockdown & curfew is eased we will be stressing the importance of hygiene (hand washing) social distancing, the wearing of facemasks & putting this into a newly planned lesson on our lifeskills programme which before the pandemic went to 3,500 + pupils who attend our 43 SoH's each evening.

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ChallengeAid

Location: Llandovery, Carmarthenshire - United Kingdom
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Twitter: @ChallengeAid
Project Leader:
Mariella Scott
Llandovery, Carmarthenshire United Kingdom
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