Skills and literacy training for better livelihoods:a review of approaches and experiences
Oxenham, J. et al.
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This study undertook a critical examination of the use in Kenya of two specific educational program strategies. The first of these incorporates livelihood skills as part of literacy education, while the second incorporates literacy skills as part of livelihood training, and has been termed the “literacy second approach”. The study was based on extensive consultation with key agencies and organizations that have supported skills development in Kenya and on a review of both unpublished and published documentation. The official rates of illiteracy in Kenya are much lower than in the other three “case” countries (Guinea, Senegal and Uganda). This difference is reflected in the observation by FAO, SIDA and the Kenya Agriculture Research Institute (KARI) that the farmers in the Farmer Field Schools in Central Province needed no instruction on literacy or numeracy, as all the participating farmers could read and write Swahili, and some could manage English. The study generated several recommendations, which should help improve the effectiveness of both livelihood and literacy skills training: • Programs should be more responsive and participatory, encouraging client to articulate their needs o ensure program relevance to participants • Programs should be put into contexts to enable courses and curricula to be shaped to meet the requirements of participants. The diverse and stratified nature of Kenyan society must be taken into consideration in an effort to create programs that are relevant to all sections of society. • Funding for adult education programs needs to be increased. This indicates the need for more studies to demonstrate how literacy programs result in real returns and thus to encourage increased government resource allocation. • Programs need to be more sustainable in order to ensure that they do not become redundant prior to fulfilling their objectives. In addition, coordination between the different service providers must be improved to ensure effective delivery of services
- Faculty of Arts