New project launched to ensure access to quality education for thousands of children in Somalia

The 13-month education project funded by EU Humanitarian Aid targets 4,000 crisis-affected children in the Bakool region of Southwest State in Somalia.

A new education project addresses the challenges of thousands of children to access integrated and inclusive education in crisis-affected areas of Somalia.

FCA partners with local organisation GREDO to rehabilitate schools, provide school supplies and train teachers in Hudur district, a hard-to-reach area in the Bakool region of Southwest State where many internally displaced people (IDPs) live.

The project is funded with a grant of 750,000 euros by EU Humanitarian Aid (ECHO).

The Education in Emergencies intervention will primarily focus on quality primary education for IDP school-aged children and an Accelerated Basic Education (ABE) programme for children and youth who are out of school or never attended school.

Children from the local communities in Hudur district that hosts IDPs are also supported, as they also have minimal access to learning opportunities in the region.

Insecurity, conflict and natural disasters cause displacement

Hudur lies some 373 kilometres west of the capital Mogadishu and has faced significant access constraints due to high presence of militant groups in its outskirts.

Hudur has a population of around 100,437 inhabitants of which an estimated 42,504  are IDPs (24,322 males and 36,482 females) residing in 26 settlements across the district.

“Years of devastating insecurity and conflict as well as natural disasters such as drought and floods have led to massive displacement, interrupting the lives of ordinary Somalis and preventing children from going to school. And with the outbreak of COVID-19, EU Humanitarian Aid is committed to supporting education for children caught in crisis and giving displaced children the chances in life they deserve,” said Morten Petersen, Technical Assistant for EU Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid in Somalia.

Renovation of school facilities and training of teachers

An assessment conducted by FCA in 2019 revealed that a lack of classrooms and safe learning spaces in addition to limited awareness and information have contributed to this education deficit. The children are denied the chance to education due to lack of opportunities and insecurity. Classrooms have not been renovated for over 30 years and are missing furniture and supplies. IDP settlements lack learning facilities.

With EU Humanitarian Aid’s support, FCA and GREDO will rehabilitate 15 classrooms and establish 40 new Temporary Learning Spaces in five schools and 30 gender-sensitive water and sanitation facilities. The project also provides training for 80 teachers in inclusive pedagogy while strengthening the capacity of community education committees, school administration and district education personnel to ensure quality and inclusive education.

Education Minister of South West State of Somalia, Mr Mohamed Yusuf Hassan hailed EU Humanitarian Aid’s support to Somalia through FCA and GREDO.

“This is an ample opportunity for the education of Somalia’s children in Hudur, where many children are out of school owing to limited opportunities and insecurity in the region. We appreciate this incredible support to the education of our children especially during the COVID-19 pandemic which has caused disruption of schools and education in the world, hence exposing children to abuse and risk”, he said.

Read more about FCA’s work in Somalia here.