Education  Kenya Project #52611

Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya

by Elimu
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Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya
Technology and Education for Kids in Kenya

Project Report | Sep 26, 2022
ELIMU RESOURCE CENTRE IS BACK TO FULL CAPACITY

By Rosemary Nyambura | Communications Coordinator

Students studying at Elimu Resource Centre, Kenya
Students studying at Elimu Resource Centre, Kenya

The Elimu team in Kenya is so happy to be open again and receiving students for their studies. When COVID-19 struck and public places were shut down, we had to close our doors to the thousands of students in Malindi area who would access the Centre on normal school breaks. Last year, the Centre started opening up to students, following the COVID-19 set protocols on public gathering. In that period, we had only 2,500 visits throughout the year. During school holidays in March alone, we received over 2,000 visits from learners of all stages. (Prior to the pandemic, we hosted over 15,000 visits in 2019.)

Our Elimu staff assists students in the study halls, helping them access digital reading materials and guiding them whenever they need help. On days when the Centre is filled to capacity, our team led by our office assistant, Ian, makes room on the balconies, bringing in more tables and chairs; and other times, even giving room to students in our office spaces. For many students, the resource centre has become a sanctuary where they can study without interruption and catch up on what they missed during their school term. Here, students have a sense of control over their studies. They are able to access digital study materials as well as consult with our volunteer teachers in areas they feel stuck.

It was such a joy seeing students stroll in again to the Centre in large numbers, all eager to get tablets and kindles from which they can access the materials they need to revise and work on their homework. Whereas students would normally stay at the Centre up until lunch hour, this time round we noticed students staying until evening; often revising or deep in group discussions. Prior to the national exams in April, we had many Grade 12 students who came to polish up and prepare for their final exams.

One graduate student described his experience, “I had really been struggling with comprehending one of the novels we were being examined on. And when I came to Elimu Resource Centre and requested to watch the play performance of the book, I learned so much about the context and this really helped me answer the questions in my exams. I am more confident now about the outcome of my results than I was before.”

While initially we have seen fewer female learners coming to the Centre, this time it is the girls who are more active and who are requesting for digital devices and consulting with our volunteer teachers. This is a good sign that girls in the coastal Kenya are embracing the value of an education and that they are committed to changing the stories of poverty and shame that have defined them for ages. We continue to encourage girls’ interest in science subjects so that they can be able to explore the variety of career options available in science and tech space.

One girl recounts, "Physics and Chemistry are my weakest subjects so far, so when we closed school for holidays, I promised myself to study harder in these two subjects. I was very ashamed of my grades and somehow I was wondering how I’ll make them better. One time a volunteer at the Centre asked if I needed help and I showed him a question in Chemistry that I was struggling with. He not only guided me through it, but has since then assigned me revision materials and exercises on the Kolibri platform which is greatly helping me understand. Now I never miss a day of study at the resource centre. So many of my friends are also using the tablets we are offered at the resource Centre to study."

Seeing the Centre at full capacity is our joy. It is a constant reminder of the significant role that access to education plays in the lives of learners. Everyday a student can study at the Centre is a day we have contributed to reducing the many millions of students who go without books let alone access to digital study resources.

Primary students studying with Elimu Kindles
Primary students studying with Elimu Kindles
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Organization Information

Elimu

Location: Ottawa, ON - Canada
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @ElimuCanada
Project Leader:
Nina Chung
Ottawa , ON Canada

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