• Teresa Otieno, CEO of FAWE Kenya said these girls come from neighbouring Somalia, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia, and Eritrea.
• Refugee girls fleeing from Civil Wars, persecution and harmful cultural practices such as Female Genital Mutilation and Early Marriages often land in Eastleigh.
In Nairobi’s busy cosmopolitan Eastleigh area, a number of refugees have sought sanctuary.
Refugee girls fleeing from Civil Wars, persecution and harmful cultural practices such as Female Genital Mutilation and Early Marriages often land in Eastleigh.
The Forum for African Women Educationalists ( FAWE-Kenya) did a survey of refugee girls living in the area during the start of the pandemic to find out how their access to Education is.
According to the report launched on Tuesday at the Jacaranda Hotel, Nairobi, the girls face numerous challenges in their quest for Education.
“The 30 girls who responded to the survey cited lack of proper documents to enrol into schools, discrimination due to their appearance, for example, the colour of their skin and their height (Sudanese refugees), and the need to earn a living as some of the challenges they face,” said the report.
Elijah Marambo, a consultant working with FAWE-Kenya on the report, said these girls often opt to work as house helps in Nairobi instead of continuing with their education.
“They feel they are too old to go back to school and at school, they are ridiculed by their classmates and sometimes by their teachers so they feel like school is not for them,” he said.
Teresa Otieno, CEO of FAWE Kenya said that these girls come from neighbouring Somalia, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia, and Eritrea.
“Unfortunately, with no stand-alone data in schools about Urban Refugee girls, their access to education, retention in schools, and transition into secondary school or higher learning is hard to track,” she said.
Otieno said one way of ensuring these girls get access to education would be to work towards availing the data on these girls.
She added that these girls' transition to secondary schools is very low for example because many of them get married, get pregnant or get employed in the informal sector before they can finish school.
Marambo told the Ministry of Education representatives present that setting up a database for urban refugees in the Ministry can also help in this matter.
“Kenya encourages the integration of these students into the education sector but data on them is not available and makes tracking them for education advancement purposes difficult,” he concluded.