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TAS-KWS Project report; (February 2016 – April 2018 )   from Stephen Kameti

Preamble

This report exposes key happenings within TAS project between Feb’16 to April 2018 though it will reach out to earlier for case studies and outcome link-up. Mainly, the report depicts project intervention within six schools (four ‘new’ and two ‘old’) in which it had direct interaction. The project still keeps advisory ties with other five ‘old’ schools which have been phased out after 5/6 years of support. Some of the phased out schools have picked very well and showing positive outcomes. One such example is Kalumu primary school which was second last in the district when we started and now it is at the top position. Boka and Asako primary schools have not been phased out because of their unique location in reference to Kora National park and their role in helping control of poaching. Majority of the parents are pastoralists and they lead nomadic lifestyle most of the time and that has delayed maturity for phase-out purposes.

The project exists to serve communities living in dire need of essential and basic services. Most of these areas are hard to reach due to poor road network and little or complete lack of basic education amenities however, positive outcomes are being experienced though more needs to be done.

TAS project implementation model where local trustees make decision and supervise their school projects has continued to become popular and as usual the big and normal problem is more schools are now requesting for an opportunity to be considered into TAS Project partnership. Most of these schools have real needs.

The report gives a quick overview on :-

  1. Project achievements and Transformations over the two years.
  2. Field stories pictorial /case studies.
  3. TAS-KWS Project partnership status.
  4. Planned activities.
  5. Challenges/opportunities.

                

  Maps showing Kora park location in Kenya and location of TAS supported schools around Mwingi NR/ Kora Park respectively.

                                                                                                          

                                                                                                                  Schools location around Mwingi reserve and Kora park                                                                                                              

 Boka pry

 

   Asako pry  &Kora sec

 

El rar pry

 

Mitamisyi sec

 

  Jarajara pry

 

 Madogo sec

       

 

Kalumu pry

 

Ikathima pr

 

Usueni girls sec

 

Mivukoni sec

 

Kaseluni pry

 

MWINGI TOWN

 

SURROUNDING COUNTIES

 

             

Key:-

1. Bold  . Schools phAsed out after 5 to 6 years of direct and strong funding. We still keep ties with the schools to nurture concept sustainability.

2. Un-bolded .  Schools under our current partnership funding and supervision. On-going.

Some key activities and achievements during the period.

·         All the four new primary schools implemented at least two TAS supported project. This was crucial in testing the local trust’s governance capacity. TAS school project implementation is secured by Local School Trusts –LSTs. The team fundraises and oversees implementation of the project. Proper accountability is a key aspect. There is still more work to be done on accountability to ensure value for money is maintained.

·         TAS Coordinator visited each of the six schools at least once per month to assist the local trusts on planning and implementation of school Projects. The Coordinator doesn’t make decision for the LSTs but gives counsel. It’s upon the respective school to make decision on which project to undertake based on their priority.

·         Development of Conservation packaged Poster to be used in schools, public display areas like churches, chiefs’ camp, county offices. The poster carries message to public discouraging them from illegal charcoal trade and distraction of wildlife. In TAS supported schools, the posters are supposed to be displayed strategically in each classroom.

·         TAS - UK Secretary visited the six schools twice and held meetings with Trustees secretaries and other strategic partners at Nairobi.

·         Aligning the news schools with County governments securing inclusion of County ward Administrators on the Local school Trusts and meeting of new County Education Ministers (Kenya had general Election in August’17 and Governors had to recruit new minister to serve during their five year term). This has happened and TAS has so far had successful environmental Day events with each county.

·         Some of the local Trustee secretaries have started to locally fundraise for their respective Trusts though in a very small way; these support has not been necessarily financial ( such supports; balls, pens, general reading books donation,). It is envisaged in future this will increase

·         Joint head teachers meeting to discuss care infrastructure, proposal writing and accountability. Main resolution; before further funding, accountability of completed projects has to be done and proper care of school facilities is a prerequisite of further partnership. Simple care of facilities and keeping the school clean. A simple request.

 

Projects implemented during the period

 

School

Project implemented

Mitamisyi secondary

-   Permanent kitchen equipped with energy

saving stoves.

-  Construction girls hostel ; capacity 80 students.

-   Held one day education forum for community

-          Held Conservation Day for the purpose of creating awareness on environmental conservation in partnership with Tana River County.

El rar primary school

-   Two separate VIP toilets (two door ) units constructed ;

each gender one unit (VIP type latrine).

-          One pupil’s exposure/educational strip.

-          One trustee secretary sponsored purchase of factory footballs (10 balls)

-          Kitchen construction.

Kaseluni primary school

-   Construction of four door unit VIP toilet. Two for

each gender.

-          One exposure/Educational trip

-          Football club started/formed.

-          Reference and study books

-          Education days; public consultation forum on education matters .

-          Construction of two classrooms

-          Provision of 45 desks,3 resource tables and one metallic book/document metallic cabinet.

Boka primary

-          Construction of one study Banda.

-          Purchase of reference and study books.

-          Held Conservation Day for the purpose of creating awareness on environmental conservation in partnership with Kitui County.

Usueni girls

-          Modern special study Banda.

Jarajara primary school

-   Permanent kitchen equipped with energy saving stoves

-   Girls hostel  constructed  to  accommodate  80 pupils.

-          Construction of modern school library

Asako

-          TAS sponsored purchase of a 43’’ flat screen TV and DVD.

-          Girls hostel. Capacity ;80 pupils.

-          Refurbishment of 8 classrooms.

                                                                                                 .

Transformations experienced: -

1.       Increased parents’ participation on school matters. The local trusts encouraged the community to participate in school development matters. In Kaseluni primary we started with 20 parents coming to meetings, now over 50 come when called.

2.       Capacity of the local trusts to oversee implementation of their school projects fairly secured; every school at least implemented one project fairly successfully and with minimal supervision by TAS Coordinator .

3.       Attraction of other partners in the schools supported by TAS possibly after seeing successful implementation of school projects by local trusts. ( one case; Jarajara primary school after TAS did girls hostel and kitchen, other supporters came in and it has been a real mix of positive school support :- CDF – Constituency Development Fund- built Boys hostel, Direct national government through the effort of National assembly majority leader-  built Dining Hall, Unicef-did  bunk beds, mattresses and bed sheets for girls hostel , emergency County support- Electrification ).

4.       Tree planting. Jarajara pupils launched strong competition in planting and raising shade trees at the school compound. TAS has rewarded the pupils because of keeping trees by supporting an education/exposure visit to Nation park and other points of their interest Mitamisyi secondary and Boka had trees planting during their conservation day events.County Government participated in the two events at their respective counties. Boka event; Governor Tana River came in person and Mitamisyi school; County gave 4,000 tree seedling for planting and county minister and Deputy Governor graced the occasion.

5.       More girls at Jarajara coming back/joining the school possibly attracted by the boarding facilities. At least 47 girls have enrolled as boarders.  The parents led by local school trustees launched back to school campaign ( door to door; sometimes “bush to bush visit” and 85 new children including 35 girls have been enrolled).

6.       Friendly atmosphere in schools. When we visited some schools (first time visit) children ran away from us (especially from whites) very unfriendly or a bit scared. Now they are becoming friendly and welcoming to visitors. This is important because with time they will learn to express their needs to partners direct and also agree on their role in their respective school development. Now they can even play foot ball with a visitor! see pic at transformation pictorial - a) transformation pictorial; sports.

7.       Two schools Boka and Kaseluni primaries went for an exposure trip for the purposes of learning and life experience. One of the schools; Kaseluni primary school (right in the bush and next to Kora National Park) all the children had not seen tarmac road before. It was their first time to see tarmac and they thought it was a big black snake!

8.       Except El Rar all TAS supported primary schools received government Laptop support.  This is because TAS had supported solar power and suitably secure classrooms to receive the laptops.

        Increased enrolment experienced at the four new schools. See table below.

school

Year 2016

 

Year 2018

Boys

Girls

TOTAL

Boys

Girls

TOTAL

Er Rar pry

43

22

 

52

26

  65

78

Jarajara pry

244

155

399

273

173

443

Mitamisyi sec

60

64

 

70

75

 

 124

145

Kaseluni pry

60

54

 

71

68

 

114

139

Asako primary

185

95

280

173

100

273 – drop.

Boka primary

130

150

280

152

152

304

  Primary schools comparison of 2016 and 2017 exam outcome and number qualified to join high schools.

Note.

      -  El Rar not yet Standard 8 and Kaseluni did their first exam this year.

      

 

Name of school

Exam entries (2016)

No. qualified to join High school/

university

Exam entries (2017)

No. qualified to join High school/

university

 

boys

girls

boys

girls

boys

girls

boys

girls

 Boka primary

15

7

5

0

14

11

6

1

Jarajara primary

23

8

5

2

22

8

21

8

Kaseluni primary

-

-

-

-

4

6

0

0

Asako primary

17

12

2

0

18

17

o

4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                 

Project Transformations case studies

Kalumu primary school success story; case study one

TAS partnership with Kalumu primary began late 2009. Then, the school was at the red due to several factors such like; poor infrastructure, High pupils dropout, famine and drought effect, retrogressive cultural practices mostly affecting girl-child such practices like early marriages, early and unfortunate pregnancies, FGM and  child labour( young girls employed as house helps and boys on casual jobs). There was real under-staffing so in most time children used to come to school to play and just go home. The school community hopes were extremely low and broken!

Today, the story is different. The school is lively and full of children.  The villagers/school community are full of good stories to tell about the school; very positive and impressive stories. One parent is quoted saying " Kalumu is our village academic giant and we hope in future great people will be made from our school" ( parent ; Peninah).

Below are quick and tabulated Kalumu transformation quick facts.

When we started the partnership; 2009

now

School population  - 276; girls 135,boys 141

School population 448,  boys 244, girls 204

Teachers - 5; 2 female and 3 male.

Teachers 10 ; 5 female and 5males ( 7 TSC (Teachers Service Commission)

3 parents employed)

Candidates - 10,girls 2, boys 8

52,    28 boys and 24girls

Mean score(m/s) - overall 178. Girls m/s 124 and boys m/s 191.

Overall m/s 261. Girls m/s 247. Boys m/s 272

Transition to secondary level - 4. Boys 4 and ZERO girls

Transition -30, 16 boys. 14 girls

Was Second last from bottom in the whole district - Position

Now second from top.  The top score came from the school!

In this year (2017) KCPE results, the top five candidates in the whole district came from the school.

SUCCESS STORY: Usueni Back to School of Young Mothers. Case study two.

Cicilia (seen outside her shop –pic) runs a one stop beauty therapy parlour which offers: -

-Air dressing

-Manicure

-Pedicure

-Berber works.

-M-pesa services.

-Soft drinks for customer to take while waiting for varous services

- Material selling related to the above services.

In her own words this was a second option after failing to hit University target grade. “I joined school while in family life to better my living and entire society. I didn’t get the grades I expected but I didn’t lose hope and with entrepreneurship knowledge I experienced in school I started a beauty enterprise. Am happy it is working though still capital challenges to expand it”

 

Cicilia Kilonzo a young mother, after going back to school and getting exposure to education and gains made during UK-Kenya exchange program on entrepreneurship. Now, she has a very successful business in one of the upcoming towns called Kamuwongo market. She says, “My business desires were rekindled when I went back to school. Especially, through the business club. Now, I can do simple management of my business transactions with ease.”

                                                                                                                            

                                                                                                            

Ruth Masikia; now a diploma student at a government university; she was received government admission. After completion of her Dip. – Community Development, she plans to proceed to do degree certificate which will take her two years only.

In her own words “I want to do Community and work with NGOs serving poor communities and help alleviate suffering in our people”

 

Young mothers back to school’16

 

                                 

Infrastructure transformation; pictorial


El rar primary school.

NOW

 

                                                                                              

                                                                                                                             


THEN

 

                                                                                                                       

   

This are first conventional classrooms since start of the school. TAS has built two classrooms and government through Constituency Dev Funds -CDF manned by local MP has built one.

The school requires five more classrooms for all. It is hoped same arrangement with CDF will continue.

 


Kaseluni primary school

                                                                             

 

NOW

 

THEN

 


                                                                                                             

                                                                                    

The school community in support of plastic ban and promotion of clean environment developed an event dubbed ‘’ school and community environmental Day’’ . They went out to the nearest shopping centre equipped with brooms, shovels, sticks, wheelbarrows and matchbox to burn the litter. This has never happened before in the area; it was a rear scenario and very exciting moment for both shopkeepers and school community. After the exercise, conservation awareness message was given by school board chair -  see pic two. Showing speech being delivered and clean town (after clean-up).

 

EMERGING ISSUES

 

DEFORESTATION; increased concern on deforestation due to charcoal burning. School communities beginning to embark on afforestation. Mitamisyi secondary school has started planting trees to actualise their dream of making their school ‘’ Green school’’.

TAS-KWS project is keen in building a strong sense of environmental conservation and tree planting and conservation messages is top on the list of intervention to actualise this.

Its upon individual schools to come up with their own tailor made program to actualise this.

 

                                                                                          

BEFORE

 

AFTER

 

                                      

 

Note ; There is also conservation messages and themes instituted in schools for school-going children to simulate and spread the same to their peers. The counties have joined this venture and now holding joint events with TAS on tree planting. The trees require fencing protection.


Phase out of plan and concept spread

Five schools have been phased out from significant TAS funding. We keep links to nurture sustainability of the gains through school visits by the TAS coordinator. Out of the five schools phased out, four have shown continued academic improvement and infrastructure maintenance.  County governments are coming in though in small scale. Constituency funds under local MP have been active partner on matching funding.

TAS model was adopted and adapted by KWS and piloted in 32 schools spread across the whole country. The program was dubbed PASMAP (Partnership for Accountability in School Management Around the Parks). The program was Funded by DFIDa but has been phased out.

TAS Project Partnership with KWS status.

KWS as an organization has been going through a very hard economical time. Revenue collection has just gone so low such that only strict basic organizational expenditures can be met for sustainability of the organization such like:- staff salary and priority vehicle running for the purposes of security and poaching control however, the organization is going through applied restructuring and injecting new personals and strategies. There is renewed hopes to see an improvement in its financial position and operation.

TWF / TAS funds have been deployed to Co-ordinator’s salary, subsistence expenses, annual gratuity and part of his transport costs.

Other vehicle expenses, office and communications costs and field support have been to KWS   contribution. 

The organization has remained very keen to keep the partnership going as it is clearly of mutual benefit.

TAS Coordinator working relationship with KWS family during the period has continued to be cordial despite the organizational challenges.

Future plans; TAS Coordinator.

1.      Enhance deliberate programs/interventions on environmental conservation through TAS partner schools.

2.      Assist the TAS supported schools to develop quality and sustainable school improvement.

3.      Continue nurturing the Local school trusts to becoming strong fundraising tool in their respective schools.  This is through the popular participation of the school community, professionals and other development partners.

4.      Assist each school trust to develop new priority projects for TAS funding and to monitor the progress of those projects.

5.      Work with Local school Trusts to establish mechanisms to respond to gender related school needs eg. Girl child education.

6.      Participate in Inter -County education meetings and be an advocate for the TAS supported schools.

7.      Assist each school to establish and maintain conservation/wildlife club. This is to promote conservation matters in the area as well as mitigating environmental degradation issues through simple school programs likes; planting of trees in school compound, promotion of conservation messages through poems, songs and essays.

8.      Keep Nurturing Local Trusts stability within the five phased out schools.

9.      Maintain the link between School Local Trusts, Nairobi based trustees/treasurers and UK trust team.

10.    Prepare and communicate relevant reports and briefings.

11.    Main stream conservation issue in our school interventions

Challenges/ opportunities.

1.      Retrogressive cultural practices embedded in some communities especially on girl child education.

2.      Overwhelming schools with real needs requesting for partnership with TAS project.

3.      Overwhelming real school needs.

4.      Recurrent droughts. This affects both parents on local contribution and school going children especially when they come to school having eaten nothing at their homes. Performance drastically goes down especially in primary school.

5.      Hard to reach areas and insecurity in some areas.