Strengthening the role of civil society in Kenya

School children in uniform in Kenya (c) Moving Mountains Trust
School children in uniform in Kenya.
CREDIT: Moving Mountains Trust
In Kenya, the Global Partnership has helped increase the capacity of Elimu Yetu, a civil society coalition. (In Swahili, Elimu Yetu means “our knowledge/education”.)

The support was funded through the Civil Society Education Fund (CSEF) which is managed by the Global Campaign for Education, one of GPE's partners. To help civil society organizations in developing countries to become stronger and more visible partners in education, the Global Partnership for Education had provided $17.6 million to the CSEF for the period 2009-2012.

Elimu Yetu was one of 45 civil society organizations which received CSEF funding. The coalition comprises 102 local education organizations, teacher unions, research organizations, and education professionals, enabling a strong role for civil society in the education sector.

"The Civil Society Fund enabled our coalition to participate consistently and meaningfully in the development of Kenya’s new education policies and strategies, in particular raising issues such as marginalized children and better mechanisms to improve governance,” said Janet Muthoni Ouko, National Coordinator of Elimu Yetu.
 
The coalition’s consistent involvement built its credibility and trust with the Government. The education reform process that started in Kenya in 2009 has helped to turn education into a constitutional right and led to the adoption of a legal framework for this right.

Kenya has also developed an education sector plan that will be the basis for GPE funding. Civil society organizations – through Elimu Yetu – have been a consistent partner in all of these processes.

Elimu Yetu’s participation in the development of the Education Act helped establish strong accountability mechanisms in schools through involved parents, local civil society and student councils. For example, there are new checks and balances in place for the recruitment of personnel who manage education sector resources.

By promoting civil society participation in the application process for GPE funding, the Global Partnership has strengthened the role of civil society in the education sector in Kenya.

Sub-Saharan Africa: Kenya

Author(s)

The Global Partnership for Education Secretariat is headquartered in Washington DC and has approximately 100 staff. The Secretariat provides administrative and operational support to all its partners including 65 developing...

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