In 2016, Avonbrook made a grant to Xavier Project for a pioneering project that sought to train refugees in teaching, both their fellow refugees but also to be used in either their home or host country.
Currently it is not possible for refugees to become full-time qualified teachers employed by the Teachers Service Commission in Kenya. Xavier Project is working to address this policy, along with other partners. However, it is possible for refugees to learn pedagogical skills that will help them deliver basic education in emergency settings. This is vital with the overcrowding of schools in refugee camps and the lack of access to any school for the majority of refugee children. The shortage of teachers in North Eastern Kenya is largely down to the insecurity seen in the region.
The Government of Kenya and UNHCR facilitated a voluntary repatriation programme for Somali refugees living in Kenya. While a large number returned, the education opportunities for returning refugee children have largely been neglected. Returning refugees with a certificate in Education in Emergencies can be key actors in addressing this problem and reinvigorating the education sector in Somalia.
The course will be delivered over a period of a year at the University of Nairobi (UoN). The curriculum has been developed by pedagogy specialists at UoN and qualified teachers from within the Xavier Project staff team. The course will cover instructional methods, curriculum development, administration and psychology in education in emergencies. Content will also be based on subjects taught in the Kenyan public school curriculum. One whole term of teaching practice will be conducted.From Xavier Project’s original proposal
Therefore, Xavier Project proposed that 20 refugees in Kenya complete a course in education in emergencies provided by the University of Nairobi in partnership with Xavier Project. Avonbrook agreed to fund this pioneering project.