This section provides information about current issues pertaining to girl education in Kyarumba, the obstacles that prevent girls from attending school, Uganda's education system and, of course, the importance of educating girls.
Naume Nzyabake, Kyarumba's pioneer female university graduate:
"When I graduated in 1987, the Kyarumba elders requested me to teach at the local secondary school- Mutanywana so as to become a role model to the rest of the girls. I am very proud of my 15 years of service at Mutanywana SSS to have contributed to excellence of hundreds of children in Kasese district and Kyarumba sub county in particular. Out of the 10 Kyarumba female graduates, who followed me, five went through my hands and I am happy for this achievement."
Girl education in Kyarumba
Girls in Kasese District have a low retention and completion rate within the school systems. Low income is one of the main contributing factors. The general level of income in the district is low, with many people living on less than a dollar per day. As such from an economic standpoint it is in the parents' best interest to keep girls at home, where they can help with domestic and farming chores to increase the family's productivity, than to have them attend school.
There are a number of parents who do recognize the need and importance of sending girls to school. However due to the high cost of education (tuition fees, scholastic materials like books, uniforms, sanitary materials and pocket money) they cannot afford to keep girls in school.
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Constraints to Girl Education
One of the main obstacles that limits girls' access to education, and severely impacts their academic performance, is the gender stereotyping that occurs in the community and in many homes. For example:
- Cultural traditions emphasize the sexually reproductive roles of girls and the belief that education reduces a girl's prospects of getting married.
- Parents often feel pressure to arrange early marriages for their daughters so they can receive the benefits of bride wealth.
- Schools don't provide girl-friendly environments in the classroom, or gender sensitivity training to teachers.
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Supporting girl's education in Kyarumba is critical because girls' education equals increased opportunity and a step towards eliminating poverty. Women hold a community together; they are a source of a better life not only for themselves, but for their children, their families and their community.
Education saves and improves the lives of girls and women. It allows greater control of their lives and provides them the skills to contribute to their societies. It enables women to find their voice in the family, village and beyond, as well as to substantially improve their own quality of life and that of their children. The community in kyarumba have fewer women participating in community and government decision making. We therefore have an opportunity to improve this trend.