Open Schools Worldwide, Africa
Contact: Dr. Alan McIlhenny (Executive Director)
Focus: Literacy and numeracy for vulnerable children
Over 52 million children do not attend school in Africa, despite education being one potential way out of poverty. Building more schools is not always the best way to address this problem. Buildings are expensive, may not be located where the children are and staffing salaries may be unsustainable.
OSWW has come up with an innovative response. A literacy/numeracy programme has been specially designed to teach children up to grade three level in six months (flexible depending upon number of classes possible per week). Open Schools Worldwide trains local volunteers as teachers and they deliver lessons in community centres, under trees and in homes, wherever the children are. OSWW finds the volunteers in Christian schools and organisations with which it partners. There are currently 4,500 children receiving an education and being taught by 500 volunteers. There are projects in South Africa, Zimbabwe, Swaziland, Kenya and with possible expansion into other countries. Innovation within development work is highly valued by WDR.
WDR's relationship with those on the ground has benefitted most recently from a visit to South Africa in June 2017.