Meet Nagirasia and the Walking Classrooms of Kenya
Published April 27, 2015 by Anne-Marie Schryer-Roy
Nagirasia Lengima, a 16 year old girl who lives in Marsabit, Kenya, dropped out of school at a young age. She didn’t think school was of any use, and spent her days looking after the family’s goats, doing household chores and looking after her two children.
This is not unusual in Marsabit, where less than 15% of girls over the age of six have ever attended school. Today, she attends classes on a daily basis, and explains that her knowledge is very important to her.
Adeso launched an innovative project in Kenya that aims to enhance access to education for girls like Nagirasia. The pilot project is going to benefit 300 nomadic children, with an emphasis on getting as many girls into school as possible. The children all come from pastoralist families who live a semi-nomadic lifestyle tending livestock. Since animals need water and pasture to thrive, communities have to move in search of these precious elements, limiting children’s access to formal education.
The education model being used has been designed so that it doesn’t conflict with their way of life, and the mobile, non-formal, education centers over flexible learning schedules. Classes take place when pupils are free, including at night, and the school calendar is based around rainfall patterns, with learning taking place mainly during wet seasons when labour demand on children is low and movement is minimal.