A student attends a remedial class after school at Losakucha Primary School. Supplies are so scarce, students are forced to write in the dirt with their fingers. Photo: Joel Cooper/CWS

According to UNICEF’s State of the World’s Children report, millions of children around the world are denied the right to education because of poverty, gender or geographical location. Ensuring that all children can attend school safely is the goal of the CWS School Safe Zones program, a collaborative approach that mobilizes parents, teachers and school administrators to enhance children’s access to quality education.

In the past year, our Nairobi-based team has worked alongside communities in Kenya’s arid northeastern region, including in Turkana and West Pokot counties. This region is characterized by low school enrollment, high dropout rates and poor educational infrastructure. School Safe Zones is increasing access to education in remote areas through the construction of buildings, water points and latrines at school sites, as well as through community awareness campaigns that encourage parents to value education for both girls and boys.

In other locations, CWS and community partners have improved existing school infrastructure through the construction of libraries and dormitories and enhanced students’ safety by fencing school grounds and water supplies. In Kenya, CWS continues to work with the Ministry of Education to conduct annual trainings for school administrators on school safety, drawing on a national safety standards manual that CWS and the Ministry produced in 2008.

An estimated


were impacted, in addition to


or households benefiting
from the program.

There were also an estimated


participating in
safety training.