Forum for African Women Educationalists - Uganda Chapter

"22 Years of Enhancing Girls' and Women's Education for Development" FAWE Uganda 1997-2019

JUBILATION AS UPCOUNTRY SCHOOLS WIN THE FAWE UGANDA NATIONAL SCIENCE AND INNOVATION COMPETITION1

 

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A student exhibits locally Made Triple Cable Bridge, used in disaster prone areas. Looking on is Mr. Usher Magara, Chief Guest & Commissioner for Science and Innovation, Ms. Susan Opok Tumusiime, FAWE Uganda Executive Director (Blue Jacket) and the Chief Adjudicator in Blue Tie.

Forum for African Women Educationalists Uganda Chapter (FAWE Uganda) on Friday 21st June, 2019 held the National Science and Innovation Competitions at Gayaza High School, Wakiso district. The Competitions were held under the theme, “Promoting Science Education and Innovation for Development.”

The competitions are focused on improving participation and performance of girls in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects at secondary school level in addition to enhancing students’ practical skills. They also aimed at stimulating girls’ interest in researching more about STEM, take-up STEM subjects and science related career disciplines; and establishing stronger relationship between what is learnt in class and actual application of concepts.

Karugutu Secondary School in Noroko district won the competition with the Sweetened Milk Powder product, 2nd runners up was Mt. Of Olives College Kakiri with Propelled Wheel Sprayer,   3rd Wanyange Girls Schools in Jinja - Bio Decomposer, 4th Kangole Girls in Karamoja - Cow dung Briquettes and 5th YY Okot Secondary School in Kitgum district - Using Solar Sunlight to cook. At the same event, 50 Best Science Teachers of biology, chemistry, physics, agriculture and mathematics were awarded brand new laptops.

 

The Chief Guest, Mr. Usher Magara, Commissioner for Science and Innovation Outreach at the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI) said that, “I thank FAWE Uganda for organizing this event. Innovation and research are important and lead to development. Government through the MOSTI is committed to supporting innovation in Uganda and this financial year Ushs. 10 billion has been allocated towards supporting innovations in different sectors including energy, road infrastructure, tools helping people living with disability and agricultural inputs, and this is meant to motivate young people to do sciences.”

He added that, “As a Ministry, we shall identify projects/ideas and support advance, protect them through patenting and copy right so that schools and students benefit from their innovations. We shall build capacity of stakeholders including learners in schools, different tertiary institutions and Universities to advance their innovations and commercialize them to both their and societal benefit.”

Ms. Susan Opok Tumusiime, the FAWE Uganda Executive Director, expressed that, “The National Science and Innovation competition is aimed at creating a platform where learners can freely come up with ideas and innovations focused on addressing community needs while using local materials. With this initiative, we expect to uncover the untapped talent of students especially girls in research and innovation to help address the current high unemployment problem in Uganda through promoting job creation and self employment. It will further enhance the students’ intellectual capacity in respect to rational, critical and creative thinking in addition to demystifying the misconception that science subjects are difficult and cannot be done by girls which is wrong. ”

Prior to the national competitions, sciences exhibitions were held at different levels right from school, district and regional, where best innovations addressing societal problems were selected to compete at the national level. National competitions featured 20 schools that represented all the four regions of Uganda including; Y.Y Okot Memorial College, Moyo S.S, Semuliki High School, Karugutu S.S, Kyebambe Girls School, Kangole S.S, Moroto high school, Katakwi high school, Mt of Olives College Kakiri, Mityana Secondary School, Kitante Hill School, Wanyange Girls’ School and Iganga Girls’ Secondary School.

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A dance group from Mackay College Secondary School entertaining guests during the National science and Innovation Competition at Gayaza High School.

Over 30 innovations were showcased by different schools ranging from office communicating devices for people living with disability, locally made blender machine, the Wheel Propelled Sprayer, Hydraulic Excavator, hand washing Soap Water Tank System and locally made cloth washing machine. Best Innovations from National competition will represent Uganda at African region exhibitions. The event was attended by Partner Civil Society Organizations, Corporate Technology Companies, Head Teachers, Teachers, Learners and media.

PROMOTING GIRL CHILD EDUCATION AS A PRE-CURSOR FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

FAWE UGANDA: “22 Years of Enhancing Girls and Women’s Education for Development.” 1997 – 2019

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FAWE Uganda Beneficiaries posing for a group photo after their graduation ceremony in 2019.

Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE) Uganda Chapter is one of the 34 National chapters of Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE) a pan African Non-governmental Organization (NGO) operating in 33 countries across Africa. The mother Organization – FAWE Regional secretariat (FAWE RS) was started in 1992 by five African Women Ministers of Education. FAWE Uganda Chapter was established in 1997, and this year 2019 we are celebrating “22 years of Enhancing Girls and Women’s Education for Development.” Our vision is, A Uganda in which all girls and women effectively participate in sustainable development.” Mission To enhance gender equity, equality and inclusion in education by influencing policies, nurturing attitudes and practices, and implementing interventions that positively influence girls’ education.” These contribute to the FAWE Africa’s mission of “Ensuring that considerable attention is paid to gender imbalances in Education and that steps are taken to enable more girls access quality Education, complete their studies and perform well at all levels.

 

Our target audience include vulnerable women, girls, boys, disabled and other socially marginalized groups in the community. The operation of FAWE Uganda is guided by the overall Goal of “Girls across Uganda being able to access quality education.” This is supported by the strategic objectives of; improving the level of gender responsiveness in Education Sector policies for girls and women, enhancing adoption and integration of positive gender pedagogy practices at school level; increasing access, retention and completion rates for girls in school and all levels of education, and strengthening institutional capacity for efficient and effective service delivery. Our interventions revolve around Education (Secondary, Tertiary and Higher Education Scholarships); Child Protection, Science and Innovation, Service delivery for child mothers, Mentorship and Gender Responsive Pedagogy, Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights, Combating Gender Based Violence, Skills Development and Livelihoods, Economic Empowerment for Vulnerable Groups and, Research and Advocacy.

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The Chief Guest, Prof. George Lada Openjuru, the Vice Chancellor of Gulu University, Mrs. Irene Kiiza-Onyango, the FAWE Uganda Board Member and other guests posing for a group photo with the Winners of the 2018 Higher Education Access Program Bursaries.

In a bid to actualize the Sustainable Development Goal 4, “Ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.” FAWE Uganda implements it’s programs at national level including; the Higher Education Access Program, the Resilient Learners, Teachers and Education Systems Project in both South Sudan and Uganda, Promotion of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in Secondary Schools - Promoting Gender Responsive Schools, Prevention of Violence against Children in and Around Schools (VACIS), Adolescent Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights (ASRHR) and Convention on Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).

The Organization has registered numerous milestones and as we commemorate this year’s International Women’s Day, under the theme Empowering Women through Innovative Approaches to Social Protection; a Pre-requisite for Inclusive and Sustainable Development we would like to share with the public some of the achievements realized in the last 22 years of our existence;

  • Provided scholarships to over 6,000 young people and vulnerable girls at secondary, tertiary and University level
  • Empowered over 40,000 young people – boys and girls, school administrators, teachers, parents and community members on importance of Education
  • Conducted various Research Studies for and with the Ministry of Education and Sports and partners including UNICEF, International Centre for Research on Women (ICRW), Mac Arthur Foundation and University of Maryland. The studies informed policy formulation and capacity building for various stakeholders on girls and women’s rights. They include the linkage between teenage pregnancy and School dropout, retention and re-entry policy for child mothers, Violence against Children in and around school, and understanding Social Norms to prevent and respond to Violence against Children.
  • Policy influencing through advocating for formulation and passing of policies focused on improving Education for women and girls such as the Gender in Education Policy, guidelines on the School Re-entry Policy-enabling child mothers have a second chance in education, sexuality education framework and ordinances on Ending Child Marriage and Teenage Pregnancy in various districts.
  • Developed and implemented innovative approaches focused on addressing violence against marginalized groups, gender dynamics and social norms in communities - the Gender Responsive Pedagogy, TUSEME (‘Let us speak’) model and the Extended Orientation Program as a mechanism for supporting scholars to enroll, compete and complete higher education.
  • Strengthened capacity of 80 secondary schools in Uganda to improve girl’s interest, participation and performance in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects through adopting Gender Responsive approaches in the learning and teaching process.

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Mr. Usher Magara, Chief Guest & Commissioner for Science and Innovation at the Ministry of Science and Innovation, Ms. Atim Mugenyi, the FAWE Uganda Board Chairperson, Ms.Susan Opok Tumusiime, FAWE Uganda Executive Director (Blue Jacket) and the Chief Adjudicator inspecting the Wheel Spray Pump during theNational STEM Competitions.

  • Promoted a safe learning environment for children in schools and communities through building capacity of local government structures; the Uganda police force, local councils, health Centre staff, youth groups, community structures, school administrators, teachers and children on child protection and Gender Based Violence prevention; violence against children and its dangers; monitoring, reporting, tracking and referral of cases.
  • Livelihood and skills development for 144 vulnerable girls and child mothers (104 Western & 40 Eastern Uganda), 200 from Northern Uganda were supported through education, equipped with life skills and have engaged in income generating activities

INTER-SCHOOL REGIONAL SCIENCE AND INNOVATION COMPETITIONS

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Mrs. Susan Opok Tumusiime, the FAWE Uganda Executive Director awarding Students and Teachers from Kurugutu Secondary School for their outstanding performance during the science competitions. Right – Mrs. Atim Mugenyi, FAWE Uganda Board Chairperson and the Head Teacher of Bwerangangi Girls S.S.

On 16th - 23rd March, 2019 Forum for African Women Educationalists Uganda Chapter (FAWEU) held Inter-school regional Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) Competitions with a major objective of improving girl’s participation, interest and performance in STEM subjects at secondary school level; and motivating them to take-up science careers.

The competitions aimed at promoting students creativity, innovation and improving their practical skills in addressing community problems through application of STEM concepts in their everyday lives. It also equipped them with life skills including; time management, teamwork and critical thinking that are vital in any career.

The Chief Guest, Dr. Jamila Nabukenya who doubles as the Surgeon at Mbarara Referral Hospital and Lecturer at Mbarara University of Science and Technology, thanked students for developing innovations focused on addressing societal needs. “To have a successful future, you need to work hard and accomplish your studies. You are all winners, what you need to do is, return to your respective schools and improve on your innovations and earn a living from them. You also need to seek God first, listen and learn more from each other through experience sharing.”

Mrs. Atim Mugenyi, FAWE Uganda Board Chairperson expressed that, “We are implementing this program with the objective of changing the world and make it a better place through using science to address community problems affecting people.” She added that, “I am a scientist and a former head teacher who taught biology for over 30 years. I do encourage you to work hard, offer sciences and become great innovators in future. You need to aim higher; work hard and the sky will be the limit.”

The FAWE Uganda Executive Director, Mrs. Susan Opok Tumusiime urged learners to challenge themselves, “Exploit your full potential and opportunities by applying what you learnt in class to address every day challenges. Science is the way to go, just like boys; girls can perform well too in sciences. As young women, we don’t want to be left behind. We need to work hard, make great friends, who can support us improve our lives. We need to critically analyze situations and develop scientific solutions addressing them.” She emphasized that, “Participants coming from different schools need to learn from each other, share experiences and apply what they have learnt to build a better Uganda.”

STEM competitions were held in all four regions of Uganda. Central region’s overall best and first runners-up was Mt. of Olives College Kakiri with the Solar Box Heater and Automated Light Sensor’, 2nd runners-up Mityana Secondary School with the Local Blender Machine.

Northern region, over all best and 1st runners up – Y. Y. Okot (Distance Measuring Wheel & A Solar Charcoal Cooler) and 2nd runners up - Munni Girls Combined Cassava and Cooking Saw Dust Stove. Karamoja over all best was St. Catherine S.S with Combined Processor, 1st runners up Kangole SS – Converting cow dung into energy source and 2nd runners-up Morulem Girls School with a locally Made Cloth Washing Machine.

Semiliki S.S topped Western region with a Vacuum Cleaner, followed by Karugutu SS - hand washing Station and Kyebambe Girls Homemade lift pump. Wanyange Girls led the East with both Elimination of bad smell using IMO &Local Construction Bridge; it was followed by Iganga Girls SS with the Hydraulic Excavator.

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A student from Mt. of Olives College Kakiri presenting to the judges, how her locally made Irrigation Pump Spray innovation works during the Inter- School Science Competitions in Central Uganda.

The schools with the best innovations from the regional competitions will feature in the national competitions, where the best will represent Uganda at the continental African level competitions.

The competitions were attended by 40 partner schools across the country. Central region exhibitions hosted at Mt. of Olives College Kakiri and attended by 9 schools including - St Maria Goretti Katende, Kitante Hill School and Mityana Secondary School; Northern region   7 schools - St Mary's College Lacor, Jubillee 2000 Secondary School and Muni Girls Secondary School - event hosted at Y.Y Okot Memorial School; 6 Karamoja region schools including Moroto High School, St Katherine Girls S.S and Katakwi High School were hosted at Kangole Girls SS, Eastern- Iganga Girls Secondary School, Wanyange Girls School and Sebei College Tegeres were hosted at Tororo Girls SS and Western Uganda - St Mary's Secondary School Rushoroza, St Theresa Girls School Nsenyi and Immaculate Girls School were hosted at Bwerangangi Girls S.S. The competitions were attended by School Administrators, Teachers, STEM Club members, students, and representative from parents, district officials and school management committees.

Promoting Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in Schools

Funded by Dubai Cares, the 3 year project is aimed at STEM amongst girls in Uganda for equitable and sustainable development. It focuses on policy advocacy and influencing, awareness creation, Annual Science Camps, Annual Regional, National and International Science and Innovation competitions, and capacity building of schools and teachers through twinning.

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A Student demonstrating how the Bicycle Power Charging System Works during the National Science and Innovation Competitions. The Innovation is used to charge phones in rural communities in Uganda.

BUILDING CAPACITY OF HEADTEACHERS ON GENDER RESPONSIVE TEACHING APPROACHES

Forum for African Women Educationalists Uganda Chapter (FAWE Uganda) held a four (4) day training to build the capacity of Head Teachers and Science Focal Point Teachers on Gender Responsive Pedagogy (GRP). The Training of Trainers (TOT) training aimed at creating a pool of trainers that will support cascade the GRP in the 80 partner schools across the Country as well as equip them with skills and knowledge in GRP practices; lesson planning, teaching methodologies, learning materials and language use in schools. It also focused on improving girls’ performance in Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects through addressing gender biases in class and school environment.

Ms. Hendrina Doroba, the FAWE Africa Executive Director (Orange Dress), Ms. Susan Opok Tumusiime FAWE Uganda Executive Director (dotted dress), Ms. Mary Ntete Gunteese, the Principal Education Officer, Ministry of Education and Sports (Brown Kitenge) and Mrs. Martha Muhwezi Programmes Manager FAWE Africa (in white) and other stakeholders posing for a group photo at the closure of the GRP training.

The team of empowered teachers will support conduct trainings on Gender Responsive Pedagogy to STEM focal point teachers in partner schools across the four regions of Uganda - Northern, Eastern, Western and Central. They were taken through the different gender concepts including; Gender equity, patriarchy, gender discrimination and responsiveness, and gender bias and their negative impact to both girls and boys in school.

Ms. Mary Ntete Gunteese, the Principle Education Officer, Ministry of Education and Sports said, “I thank FAWE for the education interventions they have implemented with the ministry and their effort in supporting Education in Uganda. Performance in science subjects has improved in some schools because of the STEM programme and FAWE’s effort. As the Ministry in charge of Education, we are committed to continue working with you to promote improved performance in sciences.” She added that, “We shall support in monitoring - visit schools, talk to both teachers and learners, encourage them in order to change perception that sciences are hard. We are also rolling out refresher trainings for science teachers in addition to ensuring recruitment in schools currently lacking.”

Ms. Hendrina Doroba, the FAWE Africa Executive Director expressed that, “Our focus is to nurture ambassadors in schools to change the mindset of teachers and make them gender responsive while teaching science subjects - Mathematics, Chemistry and Physics etc. We hope to improve performance in sciences especially if teachers became cognizant of the special needs of disadvantaged girls in class and respond by making the overall learning environment conducive to enable them participate. For instance, if conducting practical lessons in the laboratory – ensure that stools they seat on are not too long, have them practically conduct experiments and protect them with gloves on their hands.”

She added that, “Teachers need to avoid gender stereotyping and abusive language that may discourage girls from offering sciences i.e. sciences are hard, you girls cannot manage. There is need to change the thought process of teachers to understand needs of both gender and specifically appreciate the biological needs of the girl child, challenges they face during growth and how they can be supported -provide adequate water points, changing rooms and other toiletries to facilitate learning in schools.” She appreciated the Government of Uganda for passing the gender policy; though it needs to translate it into action in addition to strengthening inspection in schools.

Mrs. Adongo Harriet, a Teacher of Chemistry and Biology at Munni Girls Secondary School, Arua district appreciated the training, “I have learnt how to integrate GRP pillars in planning for my lessons. It has improved my thinking on gender related issues which we tend to over look i.e. the language used in the classroom - illustrations, feedback and comments we give on the work of students and the gender insensitive policies within school. I will return and sensitize members of staff on GRP and make them relate to it in the class room setting, incorporate GRP in lesson planning and school policies and identify some of the gender biased illustrations in text books and have them substituted during learning.”

Mr. Cherotwo Peter, a Teacher of Physics in Amanang Secondary School, Bukwo district expressed that, “The training has uncovered a lot in respect to gender. We have understood how gender discrimination affects the girl child, we teachers are going to work forward towards addressing gender discrimination through use of positive language, choice of learning materials and environment and gender responsive planning and budgeting. I will sensitize all the other teachers on gender related issues in learning.” He added that, if I change my teaching method to a gender responsive one, it will acquaint students with knowledge on how they should live with others socially, know their rights and above all improve performance in STEM subjects. We have been equipped with skills in lesson planning, career guidance and counseling all in respect with GRP.”

The training was attended by 33 stakeholders comprising of Head teachers, Science teachers, Ministry of Education Officials, FAWE Uganda staff and members. The four day training commenced on Thursday 1st – 4th March, 2018 at Esella Country Hotel, Kampala.

FAWE UGANDA HOLDS THE ANNUAL SCIENCE MENTORING CAMP TO PROMOTE GIRLS’ INTEREST IN SCIENCES

Forum for African Women’s Educationalists Uganda Chapter (FAWE Uganda) in partnership with Dubai Cares and the Forum for African Women’s Educationalists Regional Secretariat (FAWE RS) held 5 day Annual Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematic (STEM) mentoring camp from 30th November – 5th December, 2017 at Wanyange Girls School in Jinja district. The camp is aimed at stimulating girls’ interest in sciences and uptake of STEM subjects through having inspirational talks, information and experience sharing by role model-female scientists who have excelled in science careers, professional mentors, teachers and fellow learners.

The science mentoring camp is also aimed at improving students’ practical skills, encourage creativity and innovation; create a platform for learners to contribute and share ideas and innovations to demonstrate their ability to create and discover new knowledge; uncover the talent of students in research, invention and innovation; equip students with life skills and empower girls to stay in school, take-up sciences and complete their education cycle and  creating an opportunity where students can interface with the science female role models freely to inspire them. The Focal Point Teachers  also had the opportunity to lay out strategies on project implementation and share best practices and lessons learned from the past implementation period.

Ms. Ida Percy Mutesasira, the Ag. Executive Director of FAWE Uganda said, “The Annual Science Camp focuses on interesting girls to-do sciences, improving their participation and performance in science subjects. For long there has been a misconception that sciences are hard and are for boys only, as a result many girls abandoned them and to date it’s a discipline dominated by males. This is very wrong,, just like boys-girls can too perform well or even better in sciences. Both boys and girls are equal and are endowed with full potential to do anything including science subjects and courses.”

She added that, “The mentoring camp provides an opportunity to impart on girls life skills such as self awareness, assertiveness, managing peer relationships, creative thinking, critical thinking, problem solving and decision making. This will help build the confidence and self-esteem of both young women and men to overcome challenges inhibiting their success.

Ms. Sarah Mulungi, the STEM Program Officer at FAWE Uganda said, “The Annual Science Camp provides an opportunity to meet and reflect on the progress achieved in the implementation of the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics project. It brings together all the 40 implementing partners comprising of secondary schools, teachers and learners to share experiences from individual schools, challenges faced in teaching sciences, those affecting learners and how they can be addressed. Students are also learning from each other and this raises their self esteem to successfully pursue science subjects and excel.”

The science mentoring camp was attended by a total of 190 participants (150 students & 40 Focal point teachers) representing the 40 partner  secondary schools from the 39 districts of Uganda including; Masaka,  Kalungu, Wakiso, Kampala, Mityana, Mpigi, Kamuli, Manafwa, Iganga, Kapchorwa, Jinja, Soroti, Tororo, Busia, Bukwo, Buyende, Mayuge, Bushenyi,  Rukungiri,  Masindi,  Kabale,  Hoima,  Kasese, Kabarole, Bundibugyo, Ntoroko, Bulisa, Pader, Kitgum, Apac, Lira, Amuru, Abim, Napak, Moroto, Zombo,  Arua, Kaabong and Moyo.

To keep participants fit both physically and mentally, the annual science mentoring camp also featured a number of co-curricular activities including; the science debate competition, music dance and drama performances, sports competitions like football and netball, jogging and indoor games like ludo, scrabble and chase. In the night the participants retreated to telling stories and singing around the camp fire.

FAWEU Board 2019 - 2021

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Atim Margaret W. Mugeni - Board Chairperson
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You are here: Home Programmes STEM Project

Areas of Focus

- Tertiary and Higher Education Scholarships

- Secondary Education Scholarships

- Child Protection

- Science and Innovation

- Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights

- Combating Gender Based Violence

- Skills Development and Livelihoods

- Economic Empowerment for Vulnerable Groups

- Research and Advocacy

- Service delivery for teenage and child mothers

- Mentorship and Gender Responsive Pedagogy

- Capacity Building for cross section of stakeholders and strengthening Structures

Strategic Objectives

- Improving the level of gender responsiveness in Education Sector policies for girls and women

- Enhancing adoption and integration of positive gender pedagogy practices at school level

- Increasing access, retention and completion rates for girls in school and all levels of education

- Strengthening institutional capacity for efficient and effective service delivery.