Summit Literacy Foundation (SLF) exists to fix the gap in Uganda’s Education system. The structure of Uganda’s Education system is unfair for the unprivileged and poor part of the society which forms almost 80 percent of the population.
On one hand you have the rich people in urban areas who take their children to exclusive schools both local and international. On the other hand you have very poor parents who take their children to poor educational institutions which are in slums and rural areas or the countryside. These are two different worlds.
In the rich schools, a student will pay about 1 million to 5 million Ugandan shillings which is almost USD300 – 1500. In Uganda there are very few people out of the 37 million people who can afford that kind of Education. You will find that 10 percent of the people can afford to pay such fees. The remaining 90 percent will go to traditional good schools that are run by the government and other private people e.g Namagunga, Namilyango, St. Mary’s Kisubi.
These schools formed by missionaries give good education the problem is in entry. Never the less, you pay not less than USD450 per term. This is not easy for an average Ugandan to afford. What remains is that many people are going to government funded schools which have been brought about by UPE.
These schools much as they are many, are in dire need for support. Public schools are poorly managed. You go to a school and the basic amenities do not exist- no library, books, Internet and computers supplied do not work. These students are to study computer but do so theoretically.
SLF exists to provide a link between the schools which have and those that do not have. In schools which have, students are given personal books, many are given amenities which are just too much and they do not know how to use them, they do not need them. Many of them at the end of the term throw them away.
SLF therefore moves to these schools and requests to collect these books especially text books and exercise books from brilliant students and bring them to be distributed to needy schools.
We think by solving that problem or doing that simple intervention, we are able to re-distribute because schools in villages and slums have consistently shown that there are also brilliant people who come from these kinds of schools. Given any single limited opportunity, they have shown resilience and hard work and even later in life, they are always going to be persisting because they are trained to come from no hope to hope and we think when we solve this problem, everybody will be happy. After all great education is the best gift one can give humanity.
So we take this opportunity to call everyone in Uganda, East Africa, Africa and the entire world to educate because we think when you educate children, that is the best way you can give anybody to liberate. You cannot give them handouts, just educate them. You do not need to give to give them where to sleep, a visa or green card to migrate to another country, just educate and empower them.
The Internet has made the world so flat and so near, in which case when one is given basic skills, regardless where they are and can access Internet, they will be competitive globally.
This is all about empowering people with skills and knowledge so that they know their rights and where opportunities are so that they can look for them and that is what SLF exists to do. Fix Uganda’s Literacy levels by ensuring that everybody not only gets theoretical skills but practical skills which are essential.
Another component under SLF is Government has been pushing for ti mention, some of the schools have got computers and unfortunately in our research, when we visited these schools in the districts of Hoima, Gulu, Kabong, karamoja, you find computers rotting away with cobwebs, the teachers do not know how to use them. Computers have been taken there but there is no one giving mentorship, support to ensure that people are able to use these computers. Students when they learn some skills like how to put on and off a computer, use Microsoft word to type a document, the course content ends there.
So, we think if you make each school have a very good robust laboratory through taking computers to rural areas under Uganda Communication commission but also through the program of Rural electrification and therefore have many schools receiving computers but also power, so they have internet, power but do not have skills.
SLF wants to get professionals to go to each and every school and have just only two hours a month to teach students and teachers on how to get life skills using these computers which are in demand globally especially when internet is growing rapidly and people want to do info graphics.
Giving skills to these young people at that age would turn around their thinking and even begin making them earn money on those kinds of computers which they have.
Another problem is they have computers but cannot sustain internet payment because they are not making use of it. SLF therefore is to impact practical skills so that people have ready skills to begin moving and earning money on the job.
Winning Aspiration (Our Vision)
A recognized leader in the provision of practical skills and reading materials to schools in uganda
Empower needy schools with essential reading materials through linkages to great schools and educators globally