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The Learning to Live Together Programme making inroads in formal education in Kenya

Arigatou International Geneva has initiated a collaboration with the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology of Kenya and UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa to bring the Learning to Live Together Programme to schools in Kenya located in areas affected by violence and tribal clashes.

As part of the collaboration, a sensitization meeting on ethics education was held on Monday 8 September for 15 officers representing several directorates at the Ministry.  The meeting aimed to discuss the educational framework and pedagogical approach of the Learning to Live Together Programme, discuss We will formally present the six month implementation plan of the Learning to Luce Together Programme in 12 schools in the Tana River county.

Mr Chacha Mwita, Deputy Director of Education, opened the meetingon behalf of Mr Onesmus Kiminza, Ag Director for Policy Partnerships and East African Community Affairs, and thanked Arigatou International for the collaboration.  He emphasised the importance of ethics education for peace building in Kenya and to promote social cohesion.  Ms Maria Lucia Uribe, Director of Arigatou International Geneva led the workshop and welcomed the collaboration with the Ministry of Education.  Dr. Mustafa Ali, Secretary General of the Global Network of Religions for Children and Rev Fred Nyabera, Director of the Ending Child Poverty Initiative, also participated in the meeting and introduced their work.  

The meeting ended with recommendations to ensure a sustainable implementation of the Learning to Live Together in schools in Kenya, possible links with the Child Friendly Schools initiative and with the peace education curricula.  

After the meeting, a four day Training of Trainers for 15 officers from the Ministry of Education at the national and county level with experience on peace education was organized.  The purpose was to build capacity at the Ministry to train teachers in schools and provide ongoing support, follow up and monitoring and evaluation.  
 
Participants included Officers from the various directorates of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology (MoEST) including Peace Education, Education in Emergencies, Child Friendly Schools; MoEST officers from the conflict affected Tana River County and representatives from Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development (KICD), Kenyan Primary School Head Teachers Association (KEPSHA) and the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC).  

The four day intense workshop aimed to develop skills in the participants not only to learn the educational framework of the manual, but also to discuss its conceptual underpinnings and how to design training programs for teachers, particularl in view of the work that will be done in the Tana River County.  Participants discussed the reality of the county, the customization of the Learning to Live Together and concrete steps to ensure a proper training for teachers.  

The workshop was facilitated by Dr. Angeliki Aroni, official trainer of Arigaotu International, and Mr Suchith Abeyewickreme, Ethics Education Coordinator of Arigatou International Geneva. 

After the four day training of trainers, five participants worked closely with Mr Abeyewicrkreme to prepare for a five day training workshop with teachers.  The on-job training workshop will help developing trainers's competencies as well as a customized training of teachers who will be able to implement the program with children in each of their schools for a six month period.  The experiences of teachers and children who will go through the process will be documented and a booklet will be developed at the end of the program to share the experiences and assess the lessons learned.  It is expected that this process will help us scale up the program at the national level.  

Mr Onesmus Kiminza, Director of attended the last day of the Training of Trainers workshop and encouraged the participants to make sure that the implementation of the Learning to Live Together Programme becomes a priority for the county and later on for the country.  

This programme is in the framework of a collaboration between Arigatou International Geneva and the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology with the support of UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa.  Special thanks to the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology for their committment in this process and to UNESCO for the unwavering support.