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Programme 3: Literacy Support

“I love reading”

says Rebecca; a primary school child supported by Kesho who read 15 story books with us last term.

Why we do it

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Kesho Kenya children are passionate about books

From learning pre-reading skills and listening to stories it doesn’t take long for Kesho children to discover the freedom and fun of becoming independent readers.

Literacy levels in schools isn’t as good as it should be in Kenya: 75% of children under 10 years cannot read a very short story (Uwezo, 2014).

This is a common situation around the world. The UN this year expressed concern that while access to education has improved the focus now needs to turn to children receiving a quality education.

The challenges are great: lack of resources, large classes (>100), teaching methods and having to learn in your 2nd or 3rd language.

If Kesho can help develop strength and confidence in literacy, these children will have a much better chance of thriving at school and we hope will carry their love of books into adulthood.

How we do it

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Stories talk to us all. We share beautiful picture books; everyone is captivated.

Children learn at their own pace with encouragement and fun.

Through games and art we develop pre-reading skills. Once on the ladder they follow an English and a Swahili reading scheme; learning at their own pace with encouragement and fun. It doesn’t take long for them, their teachers, friends and parents to become hooked . They all love stories and reading as much as we do.

1. A wide range of fun reading activities for everyone
Over 300 Kesho and non-Kesho Children in 6 schools..

2. Regular individual reading practice in school and our resource centre
67 Children participating in 3 schools

3. School Book Clubs
178 Members in 3 schools

4. Group games and stories under a tree
Twice a week in 3 schools

5. Annual Teacher Training on modern methods of teaching literacy
21 Teachers trained

6. Literacy classes for parents too.
25 Mums and Dads enrolled due to popular demand.

Our Impacts

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The real impact of Kesho Kenya is immeasurable…

…it’s seen in the children’s faces as they listen to stories, read to each other, their parents and quietly to themselves.

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Kesho Kenya
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Kesho Kenya
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Kesho Kenya
Kesho Kenya
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Kesho Kenya
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There have been marked improvements in children’s educational achievement too
Since our Literacy Support Programme began in 2012 the reading ability of Kesho Kenya children has improved as well as their performance in their end of Primary KCPE National exam.

Children with Kesho Kenya are reading up to 17 books a term not counting those they read in the resource centre in the holidays.

The table below summarises our most notable achievements.
Key Impact Indicators

2015 Transition from Pre-reader to Reader
KCPE >250 marks (~A-C+)
Transition to Secondary School

Here’s what we recently discovered sellotaped in the back of one Kesho Kenya’s books…

“The secret to education is reading while the secret to success is support. Thanks Kesho for your support”.
Fadhili, Primary School Child supported by Kesho Kenya

And here’s what one of the 25 Mum’s said after joining our literacy classes.

“When I told my little girl that I was going back to school she laughed so hard! Now I help her with her homework- something that I could not do before! Thanks for the literacy classes Kesho”.
Fatuma - Kesho Mum supported by Kesho Kenya