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Literacy Education & Economic Empowerment

A self-empowerment tool guided by 7 strengths Curriculum based on - Belonging, Curiosity, Kindness, Friendship, Confidence, Courage & Hope.

Photo of Maimbolwa Muliwana
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Updates: How has your idea changed or evolved throughout the Prize? What updates have you made to this submission? (1500 characters)

The idea has improved slightly due to our rapid baseline survey conducted between GYT Zambia and the Ministry of Education in ten (10) schools which highlighted various children challenges faced in schools (rural and urban areas of Livingstone District in Zambia), in their families and general communities. This therefore requires targeting all key stakeholders like children, teachers/schools, parents/guardians, surrounding communities and the Ministry of Education. During the rapid assessment it was clear that all these stakeholders had roles to play and are very much needed for inclusion in the targeting during the project as each of them affect children in their stages of growth and education process according to the way children are valued, viewed, involved and handled. EXAMPLES 1. Child labour 2. Value of Children 3. Policies 4. Unfavourable traditional beliefs and practices

Name or Organization

GoYe Therefore (GYT) - Zambia Our partners are Ministry of Education (Zambia), LitWorld (USA) and GLOBAL G.L.O.W (California)

Geography

We are located in Livingstone town in Zambia

What is your stage of development?

  • Early Stage Innovator, with at least one-year experience in ECD

Type

  • Non-profit

What is the stage of your proposal?

  • Full-scale roll-out: I have completed a pilot and analyzed the impact of that pilot on the users I am trying to reach with my idea. I am ready to expand the pilot significantly.

Describe how your solution could be a game-changer for your selected Opportunity Area (600 characters)

Based on the 7 strengths curriculum & strategy we have seen tremendous improvements in the learners in behavior, reading, writing, social interaction, expression and academic improvement in class attendance and concentration from the time we started working with them. GYT empowers children to author lives of independence, hope, and joy and envisages the same for parents and guardian.

Select an Innovation Target

  • Service: A new or enhanced service that creates value for end beneficiaries.

Tell us more about your innovation (1500 characters)

GYT Zambia with the support of LitWorld uses literacy as a tool for our members to share their own stories and develop a love of reading, writing, and storytelling. The programs aim to cultivate strong leaders and thinkers within the community. By evaluating all the programs, GYT is able to codify the outcomes of the mission and work.

What problem are you aiming to solve? (3 sentences)

1. Children's future outlook is poor and hence little interest for education 2. Classroom and home environments not conducive for children 3. - High illiteracy rates among Parents and Guardians in the target communities which reduces their interest in engaging into meaningful and gainful ventures for sustainable family development

Explain your idea (5000 characters)

The project will run in Livingstone District of Zambia in both government and community schools. Each school shall have two literacy Clubs (commonly called LitClubs) for both girls and boys separately. Each LitClub shall be run by a trained Mentor implementing the 7 strengths based model Curriculum. Each LitClub shall have an average number of 15 to 20 children. Lit Clubs are weekly sessions held for an hour and a half after class for joyful learning, creative play and social interaction. The children also participate in advocacy activities of special significance on their calendar which also involves parents and guardians and other members of the surrounding communities. The LitClubs are expected to run for three years. We would like to extend the curriculum which suits all age groups to the parents and guardians who have a dire need for literacy and economic intervention activities. We have tried the same model with Teachers and personnel at the District Education Secretary’s Office which they appreciated and recommended for expansion to other sites. Parents and guardians are continually facing challenges in providing for their children’s educational needs, food and shelter which is affecting children’s progression in education and their future life. Sometimes the children abscond classes and stay home to look after siblings when the parents/guardian are away in search for piece jobs (short term jobs) in order to buy food or school requisites for their children. Many instances, children are chased from school for non-payment of school fees. Many of the children also lack a proper school uniform, while other children go to school on an empty stomach and they end up not concentrating in class, which also affects their school marks. Girls particularly are at a higher risk as they tend to drop out of the educational ladder due to lack of fees, married off by their parents, early pregnancies and marriages in which they indulge into when they have no meaningful activity to engage in; while boys on the other hand engage into alcohol and substance abuse and theft activities.

Who benefits? (1500 characters)

1. Children We are running similar project at small scale in Livingstone District of Zambia in Mwandi, Nyanzabili and Zambezi Sawmills communities. We are currently running six (6) Weekly Literacy Clubs (Lit Clubs) that serves 15-20 girls and boys in each club in grades 4 and 5 who are between the ages 9 – 14. So far there are a total of 106 children in the three schools in which we are operational. The Project is supported by LitWorld New York and Global G.L.O.W. We have participated in “World Read Aloud Day” and also in “World Literacy Day” at provincial level and our project came out the best in Southern Province of Zambia. We have already seen the following results according to the four main outcomes of the project and hence the project has generated a lot of interest in the Ministry of Education and schools in Zambia and so far we have received requests to train more than 45 schools in just only Livingstone district. We have had visitors from South Africa to just come and learn.

What kind of impact will your idea have? (1500 characters)

Yes and precisely as can be proven! The outcomes GYT envisages to achieve through this project include:- - improved sense of self by supporting each member through their thinking, writing and learning process so that they will have an increased; - improved future outlook through guiding and supporting members when they identify their goals and share experiences; - develop capacity for community engagement through their ability to identify problems and challenges of others in the community and think of ways to help resolve challenges in their community; - Academic achievement as they master their literacy skills. Literacy Clubs create safe spaces where members can reflect on their own stories and curiosities through the read aloud, discussion around the 7 strengths and literacy activities. The safe spaces cultivated in the Literacy Clubs help members develop a love for reading and learning that translates into members performing better in school or other learning and community even

How does or how could your idea impact low-income children? (1500 characters)

- Improved food security We have added this outcome because most of the children are coming from poor families hence some come to school on empty stomachs, without school materials and without proper school attire and some without shoes.

Innovation: What makes your concept innovative? (5000 characters)

This innovation is unique as it builds the seven strengths in targeted children (Curiosity, Confidence, Courage, Friendship, Kindness, Hope & Belonging) as children are growing up in unkind, uncaring, unfriendly environment with very little hope for the future and in an environment where there is less value for education and children. Therefore, it focuses not only on building up the seven strengths in the children but also building positive, praise centered mentorship environments (schools, homes and communities), building value for children and their stories and the value for equal access to education of all children. It promotes a sense of belonging to the classroom, home and community environment to all children.

Scale: Describe how your idea could reach a significant number of end-users. (1500 characters)

GoYe Therefore Zambia is currently implementing a Literacy project for the children in the targeted community schools as highlighted above and it is our desire to scale up the project with your financial and material support. The trained Coordinators and mentors have the capacity to train other trainers for the expansion of the project. This idea has generated a lot of interest from the Ministry of Education and Schools in Southern province and we got too many requests for training due to amazing results in learners already noticed where we are working. It has high potential of scaling up and sustainability as we engage the government at all levels (District, provincial and national) and raising the partnership with the Ministry from District level to provincial and national levels. We foresee the government incorporating it into the country curriculum with our support. The current demand for teachers training has been limited by financial capacity and various logistics.

Feasibility: Where are you with understanding the feasibility of your idea? Describe what you’ve done so far and your plans. (3000 characters)

We have piloted the idea and proved its effectiveness, and now accepted by the Ministry of Education as a solution in Zambia's Education system. GoYe Therefore has the capacity and expertise to implement this project in the communities where there is already a presence. The organisation has trained coordinators and mentors that are readily available to implement the project. GYT has office space that has been granted by the Ministry of Education’s Livingstone District Education Board Secretary. GoYe Therefore Zambia is currently implementing a Literacy project for the children in the targeted community schools as highlighted above and it is our desire to scale up the project with your financial and material support. The trained Coordinators and mentors have the capacity to train other trainers for the expansion of the project. GoYe Therefore Zambia has decided to incorporate the Economic empowerment programme for parents and guardians to get involved in economic ventures that will bring about sustainable economic benefits to the welfare of families. This need has arisen in the community schools where GYT operates as parents and guardians have continuously faced challenges in supporting their children through provision of school materials, food and fees. it has been piloted in three schools where we are running six (06) LitClubs with an average number of 120 pupils. We have conducted teachers and Ministry of Education (District level) orientation as well as schools and parents/guardians with pupils interaction where all the stakeholders learnt the importance of coordinated efforts and roles in children's access to education. We have participated in the World Read Aloud day and World Literacy Day. This project is simply a wonder to the Ministry of Education! We plan to collaborate with local stakeholders (children welfare, protection, learning, parents/guardians), engage government for policy & curriculum improvement and upscale partnership to national level.

Business Viability: How viable is your business model? (5000 characters)

We are already implementing this innovation in three government schools and we have seen tremendous results. We started the implementation in February 2017. We are in our second year. There is more demand from both the Ministry of Education and schools for this project. We have scheduled more trainings in 2018 for additional schools under the auspices of the Ministry of Education.

HCD: How have you used human centered design to build or refine your concept? (5000 characters)

We have just completed a rapid survey in Ten (10) schools in Livingstone District together with the Ministry of Education. The schools are located in both Urban and Rural areas. The survey results and engagement with schools show the real need for this project and common problems arising at schools, homes and communities.

Tell us more about you (3000 characters)

1. The idea came from LitWorld (USA): Through our partnership with LitWorld, we have established six LitClubs and are currently implementing the 7 strengths based model Curriculum and we are currently administering year one curriculum. Literacy Clubs have been established at Mwandi Community School, Zambezi Sawmills and Nyanzabili Community schools were we have a partnership agreement which was endorsed by the District Education Board Secretary in the Ministry of Education In Livingstone. The LitClubs are running for three years and begun in January this year (2017). So far, we have seen tremendous improvements in the learners in behavior, reading, writing, social interaction, expression and academic improvement in class attendance and concentration from the time we started working with them. The Head teachers, teachers, parents and guardian in the school attested to this during our interaction with them. 2. What excites us are the seven strengths' effectiveness in bringing out the four outcome areas in children. We have seen learners start loving learning, improving in academic achievement, self esteem, future outlook, kindness to one another, confidence and increased participation in class. The seven strengths are simply the foundation! We have learnt to VALUE children and their own stories which increases their desire to also listen and they feel that belonging in class, home and communities. 3. We have trained Partnership Coordinator and Mentors empowered to administered the 7 strengths three year curriculum. As GYT and LitWorld, we have developed a customized monitoring and evaluation system that has helped us determine the outcomes of our program and also help us to measure these outcomes by using our evaluation activity kit. We have trained mentors that are responsible for the LitClub activities closely supervised by the Partnership Coordinator at GYT.

Do you have the people and partners you need to do what you’ve described? (600 characters)

Precisely! We have trained Partnership Coordinator and Mentors. We also have training material for mentors to train new mentors to effectively administer the seven strengths curriculum to whatever target group. In terms of material we are adequately equipped but also open to new ideas (as one of the seven strengths is "Curiosity"). We are in partnership with Ministry of Education & schools

As you consider your next steps, what kinds of help could you use? Is there a type of expertise that would be most helpful? (1800 characters)

The help that we would use is including the communication budget and production of communication material, banners, media (Television & Radio) programs. Apart from partnership with the Ministry of Education, we shall identify other partners working in this area whom we shall assess through our Assessment Tool to identify their areas of improvement as we partner for improved strength. We shall need partners in the area of communication (media) and production of communication materials.

Would you like mentoring support?

  • Yes

If so, what type of mentoring support do you think you need? (1200 characters)

Organizational Development & Team Building

Are you willing to share your email contact information submitted on OpenIDEO with Gary Community Investments?

  • Yes, share my contact information

[Optional] Biography: Upload your biography. Please include links to relevant information (portfolio, LinkedIn profile, organization website, etc).

GYT was founded in 2011 and legally registered on 17th January 2013 with the Registrar of Societies in Zambia # ORS/102/53/258 and registered under the U.S. federal Government’s System for Award Management (SAM) – 850528131/ SSW48 www.goyethereforezambia.com https://www.facebook.com/GoYeThereforeZambia/ https://twitter.com/GoYeThereforeZ https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCI0AVbznKPe0ceqrdv

[Optional] Attachments: Please upload relevant attachments or graphics or show us how you prototyped.

GYT aims at empowering the needy, vulnerable and poor through literacy education, economic empowerment, access to material and equipment support to the needy in the targeted communities, etc. Vision: An empowered society taking charge of their lives Location: Livingstone town in Zambia, Southern Africa Ministry of Education Building, Akapelwa Street, Off - Musi-Oa-Tunya Road, P.O. Box M66, Livingstone, Zambia

Name or Organization

LitWorld

What is your stage of development?

  • Early Stage Innovator, with at least one-year experience in ECD

Type

  • Non - Profit

What is the stage of your proposal?

  • Full-scale roll-out: I have completed a pilot and analyzed the impact of that pilot on the users I am trying to reach with my idea. I am ready to expand the pilot significantly.

Describe your submission in one clear sentence

A self-empowerment tool guided by 7 strengths Curriculum based on - Belonging, Curiosity, Kindness, Friendship, Confidence, Courage & Hope.

Select an Innovation Target

  • Service: A new or enhanced service that creates value for end beneficiaries.

Tell us more about you (3000 characters)

1. Our idea came from LitWorld who are our partner and donor of current literacy project in three schools in Livingstone District. 2. What excites us is the focus on the child who are really in need of support at school, home and community environment. Most children are negatively affected in all these environments and most children are living and growing up with anger, rejection, less sense of belonging and appreciation. We are excited that this challenge is what is really needed as a solution to our children. 3. Experience: We are currently running six (6) Weekly Literacy Clubs (Lit Clubs) that serves 15-20 girls and boys in each club in grades 4 and 5 who are between the ages 9 – 14. So far there are a total of 106 children in the three schools in which we are operational. The Project is supported by LitWorld New York and Global G.L.O.W. GYT empowers all children to author lives of independence, hope, and joy and envisages the same for parents and guardian. In our literacy clubs we have seen the young learners increased love for school, story telling, participation in class, kindness to one another, increased academic performance, etc through building the seven strengths in them. Litclub sessions are weekly sessions about an hour and half per session spearheaded by our trained litclub mentors. We have evidence on the ground which can be proven even through our partner the Ministry of Education. Hence, there is increased demand in many schools for teachers and parents/guardians training.

Do you have the people and partners you need to do what you’ve described? (500 characters)

GoYe Therefore has the capacity and expertise to implement this project in the communities where there is already a presence. The organisation has trained coordinators and mentors that are readily available to implement the project. Our Partner is the Ministry of Education who oversee all the schools. GYT Zambia is currently implementing a Literacy project for the children in the targeted community schools as highlighted above

As you consider your next steps, what kinds of help could you use? Is there a type of expertise that would be most helpful? (1800 characters)

the following is the help we could use: 1. Detailed Baseline Support in Schools in Livingstone District and surrounding communities 2. Electronic Project System (for eletronic filing, reporting, etc)

Would you like mentoring support? [Relevant only for Early Submission Deadline]

  • No

Mentorship: How was your idea supported? [Relevant only for our early submission participants] (1500 characters)

Unfortunately due to unforseen circumstances during the time of the period of possible mentorship we were still on break which was a bit prolonged due to the Cholera situation that broke out in our country. Nevertheless, the requested for mentorship was mainly on organization and not on the project.

Are you willing to share your email contact information submitted on OpenIDEO with Gary Community Investments?

  • Yes, share my contact information

[Optional] Biography: Upload your biography. Please include links to relevant information (portfolio, LinkedIn profile, organization website, etc).

https://www.goyethereforezambia.com

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Photo of John Konsin
Team

Maimbolwa, Thanks for a terrific submission and program to help improve child literacy and empowerment. As a sponsor to a young girl in Nairobi for many years, I have learned first hand the important difference education makes in the lives of disadvantaged children. Continued outreach and support from challenges like this one will only help your cause and our kids. I can't help but think about the opportunity to find a way to consolidate the message and need of all the child literacy program around the World. Do you think you can find and partner with similar programs around the Globe? Thanks for your efforts. Sincerely, John

Photo of Maimbolwa Muliwana
Team

John Konsin thaks for your inspiring comment. Indeed we are busy looking around the world to have partnership to take the message around. Forexample, in August there was a request from us in Botswana to hear about our program and it really excited them such that they are intending to implement it in 2018. In July 2017 we received visitors from South Africa who came to visit and learn about our project in selected and schools and they were amazed at the results. later they requested us to hold a Stakeholders orientation meeting in FreeState province in South Africa and we visited the Ministry of Education including some schools where we learnt the dire need of this unique program. They are starting to implementing this project in few schools in February 2018. So you can see how we desire this to spread. In Zambia next year we are trying to mobilise resources for holding a unique stakeholders meeting for stakeholders buy-in for increased support and participation. One of the Stakeholders is the Ministry of Education (National Level), Zambia National Educational Coalition (co-host and mobiliser) and various local development actors and donors.

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