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Drumming Up Change: Celebrating the Vibrant Launch of the Education Changemakers Program in East and Central Africa

Launch of the Education Changemakers Program in East and Central Africa

Amid the rhythmic sounds of drums and the enchanting chants of the Rambolo Dancers, the Kenyatta University Conference Centre (KUCC) came alive with the vibrant spirit of Kenyan culture. The traditional dances, showcasing a rich tapestry of Kenyan music and movement, set the perfect tone for a day filled with excitement and promise .

Trevor Noah Foundation Delegation receiving a warm welcome at the Education Changemakers Program, Kenya inauguration.

Sheila Roquitte, Deputy Mission Director for USAID Kenya, enjoying a lively performance by the Rambolo Dancers.
Sheila Roquitte, Deputy Mission Director for USAID Kenya, enjoying a lively performance by the Rambolo Dancers.

Announcing Our First Cohort in East and Central Africa

We are thrilled to announce the launch of our first Education Changemakers (ECM) Cohort in East and Central Africa, marking our inaugural journey in this dynamic part of the continent. To date, we have proudly graduated 150 alumni from our transformative program. This year, we are training 88 emerging young education sector leaders from 14 countries in East and Central Africa, namely: Burundi, Central African Republic, Republic of the Congo, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda. Our rigorous selection process ensures a diverse and inclusive cohort that mirrors the region’s rich educational landscape.

Empowering Young Leaders for Educational Transformation

Our mission is to empower young African leaders to drive real change and transformation in education within their communities. By equipping educators with the necessary tools and support, we aim to foster a brighter future for Africa’s youth. This collaborative initiative is a partnership between the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) Regional Leadership Center East Africa, Kenyatta University, USAID Kenya, supported by Oak Foundation. This is a powerful synergy that promises substantial impact, leveraging the strong track record of empowering young leaders and driving positive change through the lens of inclusion, equity, and equality of all partners involved. This collaboration is pivotal in realizing the goal of empowering the next generation of leaders to create a more just and equitable society.

MOU signing ceremony and cake cutting to celebrate the launch of ECM in East and Central Africa.

Congratulations to Our Changemakers

Congratulations to all the selected successful young leaders in the education space who are already making stride in their communities to transform education! The journey you begin today holds immense potential for lasting impact.

Over the next few weeks, participants will engage in an intense training program featuring sessions on human-centered design thinking, guest lectures, immersive experiences, and opportunities to pitch innovative ideas aimed at improving education outcomes in their communities. Our cohort graduates on July 5th, returning home with newfound energy and like-minded peers, ready to embark on the real work ahead.

We had the pleasure of catching up with some ECM 4 participants, who shared their reasons for applying to the program and their experiences so far.

One participant, Aziza Hassan, shared,

“My focus in my school is on education technology, I applied for ECM because I wanted to be a part of a community that believes in the power of education to change lives. My journey so far has been inspiring, and I am excited to bring back what I learn to my community. The team I am with is very diverse, from different backgrounds and countries, I am learning so much from everyone”.

Another changemaker, Ann Nyakinyua Gathura, noted,

“My love for Math was inborn. During COVID, I started a Mathematics club from my parent’s garage to tutor Maths. Currently, I have an online community tutoring of over 10,000 students who learn from the math tutorials I share online. The support and resources provided by ECM have been invaluable. I feel empowered to make a significant difference in my school and beyond.”

A Bright Future Ahead

The Education Changemakers Program is more than just a training initiative; it’s a movement toward educational excellence and equity. As our newest cohort embarks on this journey, we look forward to witnessing the incredible changes they will bring to their communities and the broader educational landscape of East and Central Africa.

Here’s to the future leaders of education, the changemakers who will shape the future of Africa’s youth. Together, we can create a world where education is a catalyst for positive change and sustainable development.

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