A five-year Gender Equity through Education Programme has been launched in the Southern Sudanese capital of Juba. Launched by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in cooperation with the South Sudan government, a total of US $6.5 million has been earmarked for the programme.
The program, implemented by USAID partner Winrock International, will promote gender equity in secondary schools and teacher training institutes throughout South Sudan and the Three Areas: Abyei, Blue Nile, and Southern Kordofan.
Less than one in 10 South Sudanese girls complete primary education, and one percent of them attend the less than 100 secondary schools that serve the millions of people living in Southern Sudan. Besides, the region is bereft with more qualified women educators.
In a statement, USAID believes the Gender Equity through Education program will encourage nearly 7,000 girls and women to complete secondary school and become teachers. The programme's scholarships will cover school fees and supplies and help reduce financial barriers to secondary education.
The improvements in schools will help eliminate social barriers to education, including, for example, the provision of separate bathrooms for girls and boys, USAID says.
Incentives such as gender-sensitive teaching aids, English language improvement courses, and scholarships to cover training fees and supplies forms incentives meant for wooing women to the teaching profession.
The programme also takes into account addressing the cultural barriers to women's education. This issue will be tackled through community advocacy campaigns and greater government involvement in gender-sensitive programming.
In order to promote sustainability, Winrock will pilot a mother-daughter micro-credit initiative to enable communities to eventually take over the scholarship allocation. Winrock will also conduct a study to measure the impact of USAID's education efforts in South Sudan from 2003 to 2012.
Since 2001, USAID has been working in the education sector in Southern Sudan. In support of the implementation of Sudan's 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement, the agency integrated humanitarian and reconstruction programs, emphasize investment in community development and essential services to reduce tensions, rebuild communities, and encourage and sustain the return of displaced people.
The United States is the single largest donor to Sudan, contributing nearly $4 billion toward assistance in Sudan and eastern Chad since fiscal year 2005.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.