Dorcas and her child.

Girls who become pregnant – even by rape – or mothers while in primary and secondary schools are removed and until recently were forbidden from returning to publicly-funded schools. They are encouraged to use the Alternative Education Pathways (AEPs) outside the public school system. However, this is impossible for most girls because of the shortage of such schools that will allow mothers to enrol, even if they can afford the high fees. Furthermore many of the girls lack support from their families because of poverty and stigma.

Tumaini Education Program is creating an inclusive and stigma free learning centre that enrols teenage mothers who are excluded by the public school system before they have taken basic education qualifications. It operates as an open school to offer basic education and vocational skills for adolescent mothers who will be able to sit for national examinations and have the chance of proceeding with higher studies, other formal trainings and or engaging in entrepreneurship.

Tumaini School is a sustainable learning centre that will enrol up to 600 teenage mothers each year. It will enable teenage mothers to have a second chance of accomplishing a basic education cycle and restore their right to access higher education in the formal system. The school will also set up a model learning centre which can be replicated by other stakeholders in the country wishing to support the thousands of girls who drop out of schools due to pregnancy.