Members of the community expressed an interest in further education. In particular, they expressed interest in education in the health sector, where skills gained could be used to improve their village and surrounding communities.

Education scholarship program 2010-current

Education for all has always been an integral part of the sustainable development agenda. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that have been developed as part of the post 2015 development agenda include education for social development. In Goal 4 of the SDGs it reads "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote life-long learning opportunities for all" and includes a set of associated targets.

In 2010, community leaders in Yooren requested that Barefoot Initiative support Afar students who had completed high school to study at a tertiary level. 

Barefoot Initiative is thrilled to be able to provide Afar students with the opportunity of a higher level of education through their established scholarship program. We encourage females to join the program, however due to cultural barriers it is very difficult to find Afar girls who have completed high school and who receive permission from their families and village leaders to move to the city for study. It is a challenge that we are committed to work with. 

The total number of students sponsored by the project to date is 15 (4 female), 5 of whom have graduated successfully. The remaining 10 students are studying Nursing, Public Health, Pharmacy and Economics.

Our only graduated female student, Fatuma Mohammed graduated with a degree in Clinical Nursing in September 2015. Fatuma is now employed in one of the only 2 government hospitals that serve the entire Afar region, where she works to improve maternal and child health.

The objectives for this project are:

  • Providing equal access for the opportunity to a tertiary education

  • Eliminating gender disparities in education and provide equal opportunity to women and men to a tertiary education, with a focus on Indigenous and marginalized persons

  • Strengthen the skilled human resources of the Afar by building the capacity of its youth

For more information about each of the students and their backgrounds, please click here

To support our current 10 students click on the link below to find out who they are and how you can help