Finn Church Aid (FCA) signed an official agreement with the Eritrean National Commission for Higher Education in Asmara, Eritrea mid-January.
Eritrea faces a critical shortage of trained teachers and training institutions are in need of radical reform. In recognition of Finland’s international reputation for quality education, the Eritrean government has sought FCA’s support to revitalize teacher education in Eritrea.
Both parties have now agreed on a three year programme (January 2015 – December 2017). Finn Church Aid will begin work in Eritrea, working side-by-side with Eritrean educators to strengthen teacher education. The support for the existing teacher education programmes will take place in all training institutions in Eritrea.
“The new agreement represents a welcome opportunity to renew partnership with Eritrea. Strengthening the teacher education is a great entry point to develop the education system as a whole”, says Antti Pentikäinen, Executive Director of FCA.
FCA will also support the planning and development of the first Innovation Centre in Eritrea. This new initiative will bring together innovation experts from Finland, Eritrea and East Africa.
The vision of the Innovation Centre is to develop new and local solutions to address pressing challenges in Eritrea, such as energy provision, better learning opportunities, education for marginalized populations in hard-to-reach areas, job creation, and so on.
“By improving the teacher education, we can have a far-reaching impact for the younger generation and the society as a whole. Finnish educational expertise has a lot to offer for this work”, says Tomi Järvinen, Director for International Cooperation at FCA.
FCA is in the process of developing strategic partnerships with Finnish education experts to support the development of the teacher education program at the College of Education in Mai Nefhi. FCA is also currently recruiting a full-time education specialist to work in Asmara Community College of Education.
The initial budget for the programme is 1.5 million euros for the next three years. The work is financed by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.
For further questions:
Tomi Järvinen, Director for International Cooperation, Finn Church Aid
tel. +358 40 641 8209