Tuesday, June 22, 2010
NEP: FOOD "KEEPING GIRLS" IN SCHOOL
Girls from poor families, who face the danger of being married off early, are accessing secondary education, thanks to relief food supplies.
Dubbed the “Food for Fees Scheme”, the initiative has ensured that 102 girls at Kutulo Girls’ Secondary School in Wajir East, among hundreds of others, pursue their education dreams in the boarding facility started barely three years ago.
The scheme, borne out of the government’s relief food programme in arid and semi-arid areas, involves undertaking a valuation of the relief supplies received by each school. The schools then use the monetary value to offset fees for needy students. The innovative project, according to the deputy provincial director of education, Mr Lawrence Kirimi, was borne out of the need to enhance accountability in the relief food programme.
“FGM cannot disappear in a day. But we hope to wipe it out in the next decade,” he said. Although Kutulo Girls, set to present its first Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examinations candidates next year, still lacks facilities like laboratories, a library and a dining hall, both teachers and students express confidence that these challenges will be a thing of the past in the next few years.
Indeed, the school, just like its motto, “Be the light”, is a bright spot for girl-child education in this area where little regard is given to their welfare.