YES Arusha is pleased to announce the commencement of a scholarship program aimed at young students in Arusha, Tanzania. To date, our efforts have been focused on a small group of children for whom we have arranged sponsorships to attend primary school. While much attention is given to the millions of children without access to primary education, those who manage to complete primary school but have limited secondary school options are often overlooked.
In Tanzania, government primary schools are free of charge (excluding school supplies) to all children; however, the quality of the teaching and the facilities are inconsistent and substandard. It is for these reasons that many children never attend school in the first place – their families see it as a waste of time. Yet there are many who battle their way through primary school in the hope of improving their future opportunities.
Primary school ends at grade 7 and culminates with examinations that (if passed) award students with a place at a government secondary school. This is where the real challenge begins for these students. For primary school the language of instruction is Swahili with English offered as a single subject, which is rarely taught substantially due to a lack of skilled teachers. But on the first day of secondary school the language of instruction becomes English, leading to huge dropout rates and a complete lack of understanding by students. There are few second chances for those who fail to thrive in government secondary schools.
Sadly, many talented students are left behind by this education system. Families with some money available can arrange extra tuition to ensure their children learn English before secondary school, however for those students coming from the poorest families there is little opportunity to master the English language. Many of these children have fought hard to succeed in primary school, and given the opportunity may become the future politicians, lawyers and teachers who will eventually change this flawed education system.
YES Arusha is developing this scholarship program to benefit these very students to ensure that their talents and abilities are realised. Our partner, Haradali Secondary School is an independent and well-operated boarding school that gives students the time and space to reach their potential.
We have worked alongside the staff of Haradali Secondary School and developed a strong and detailed application process to find the most deserving students. As this is the first year of the program we are taking applications from students at four government primary schools in the area where we are presently based. YES Arusha and Haradali will work together throughout the application, interviewing and selecting process to ensure fairness and transparency in awarding scholarships.
Students who receive this scholarship will be awarded with a position at Haradali Secondary School. The scholarship provides a student with their school and boarding fees for four years (Form 1 – Form 4). School resources may also be provided depending on the needs of each student. Haradali has also arranged that scholarship recipients will be invited to attend pre-Form 1 tuition for 3 months after their primary school graduation. This tuition will assist them in developing their English language skills to ensure the best possible success at secondary school.
A minimum of two scholarships will be awarded at the end of 2016; one to a male student and one to a female student. YES Arusha hopes to raise enough money each year to provide two full scholarships. In the future, should this program be successful, we would hope to extend it further to include other areas of Tanzania.
The average cost for each scholarship is $5,000 ($1,250/year for four years). Our goal is to raise at least $10,000 each year, meaning we can award two scholarships each year.
All donations and contributions to this program will be put into a single fund. We can guarantee that 100% of the money donated towards the scholarship project will go directly to the students’ school fees, boarding fees, school resources and/or other school related expenses.
We are calling upon organisations, businesses, schools and individuals to support this new program of ours. You can either make a one-off donation or you can commit to sponsoring a set amount each year.
Donations to YES Arusha of over $2 are tax-deductible in Australia. Donations of over $1,000 will receive a special mention on our website and in our quarterly newsletter. Contributors will all receive updates on the scholarship recipients – it will be very exciting to see how well they do!