Where we work
Link Community Development Scotland was established in 2006 and shares the Link Community Development mission to promote access to quality education in rural communities in sub-Saharan Africa.
Scotland and International Development
Our work helps Scotland to meet its commitment to fighting poverty in developing countries by supporting the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and the educational development objectives of the Scotland-Malawi Mutual Co-operation Agreement.
What we do
We work with our Link partners in Africa to deliver a wide range of school improvement programmes. We support our partners to plan, implement and evaluate their programmes, and we work with key funders to ensure ongoing support.
Our current work in Africa
Our current work is based on our previous experience and learning about what is effective. For more information click on the Impact tab at the top of the page.
To find out how to get involved with our work in Scotland see our Current Actiivites tab at the top of the page.
Link Community Development’s vision is a poverty-free Ethiopia, in which girls and boys have equal access to quality education and can develop their potential for better life opportunities. Our purpose is to inspire innovations in education policy based on detailed evidence-based grassroots experience. Since 2007, LCD Ethiopia has been working in the Wolaita Zone of the Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Regional State supporting the School Improvement Program component of the General Education Quality Improvement Package.
Complementary Basic Education (CBE) is a Malawi Government programme which aims to provide educational opportunities for out-of-school children between the ages of 9 and 14. CBE is an accelerated learning programme with an emphasis on literacy and numeracy, healthy living, citizenship, livelihoods and agriculture, and the environment. Link Malawi runs 120 CBE Centres in Dedza district.
& Supporting Resettlement through Education (SRE)
The overall objective of SIRK and SRE was to contribute to the resettlement of an estimated 49,500 Internally Displaced People (IDPs) in Katakwi District in Eastern Uganda. The focus was on 3 sub-counties (Ongongoja, Ngariam and Magoro) and 27 primary schools. SIRK/SRE’s strategy assumed that access to quality education will support resettlement if:
- Schools provide a place of care and safety that helps heal the trauma of conflict upon children and the community
- Schools are recognised as promoting opportunity for children and prosperity of the community
- Schools become centres of community activities promoting social cohesion
Launched in September 2012, this new and exciting campaign replaces our current Link Schools Programme and engages with schools via new platforms and projects. Our priority is to deliver a sustainable, high quality Development Education programme which offers real value to schools while enabling them to take action to improve education in Africa.
For more information on Passport to Education please click here
The Link Schools Programme, currently funded by the EU, will close in December 2012. The programme enables schools to form a partnership with a rural school in Ghana, Ethiopia, Malawi, South Africa or Uganda. This has been an excellent tool for bringing a global dimension to teaching and learning. The principles learnt in implementing the Link Schools Programme will be applied to the new Passport to Education campaign.
An exciting and rewarding journey, this 15-month development education programme for school principals and teachers is centred around a 5 week placement sharing skills with peers in a school in Uganda or South Africa. The programme helps teachers to become more competent development educators and develops their leadership, management and training skills.
For further information about the programme in Ireland, please click here
School Sponsorship allows individuals to contribute towards improving the education received in African schools. By sponsoring a school you can help to support Link’s whole school improvement activities. Through your support, we are able to help the schools we work with to identify and tackle the obstacles that prevent them from providing a quality education to their children.
The Family Literacy Project aims to address the low literacy achievement of many primary school children and the lack of confidence of parents/community members in their ability to provide support to these children. The project operates in 60 schools and communities and aims to directly impact on 28,388 lower primary learners and a minimum of 56,776 parents through Reading Club, adult literacy classes and community reading fairs.
The Community Mobilisation for School Improvement project addressed the poor quality of education in rural Ethiopia. It worked with a total of 185 school communities across six woredas (Damot Gale, Bolosso Sore, Damot Pulasa, Damot Sore, Kindo Koisha and Damot Woide) and impacted on over 116,000 students.
Link Ghana is the implementing partner for Complementary Basic Education in the Upper East Region. The Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service are receiving support from the UK Government through its Department for International Development (DFID) to implement the CBE programme to enrol 120,000 out-of-school children by 2015. The Complementary Basic Education (CBE) is a ground-breaking and accelerated approach that teaches disadvantaged children how to read, write and become numerate in a nine-month period. The CBE programme which is targeted at out-of-school children so they can eventually enter primary school at class 3 or 4.
The Early Learning Enhancement Project (ELEP) aimed to improve the early learning outcomes for pupils in target primary schools in Western Uganda on the shores of Lake Albert. ELEP built on Link's existing work and four years of progress in Buliisa and three years in Hoima covering a total of 56 government primary schools. The Early Learning Enhancement Project further enhanced and advanced the educational performance of 4,795 early learning pupils (Buliisa: 2,528 and Hoima: 2,267).
The intended impact of this project is improved life chances for marginalised girls. At the end of this project 24,133 marginalised girls in rural Wolaita will be able to complete a full cycle of education and demonstrate improved learning. By ‘marginalised ‘, we mean economically deprived girls living in a remote rural area with high population density at risk of dropping out or non-completion of primary school. The project works directly with 56,683 marginalised girls and hopes to create an enabling environment for improved learner outcomes on a wide scale.
Voluntary Service Overseas (VSO), in partnership with four local partners and the Ghana Education Service (GES) is implementing an eight -year (PHASE 1: 2009-2014) (PHASE 2: 2014-2017) and education programme in northern Ghana called TENI (Tackling Education Needs inclusively). The project seeks to achieve systemic change in basic education by promoting retention, transition and completion of children particularly girls and children with disabilities. Primary beneficiaries are children especially girls and children with disabilities and teachers while the secondary beneficiaries include parents, staff of education directorate, the District Assembly and communities.
The overall objective is to improve the provision of quality education to the children of Malawi by supporting the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology to develop (1) a cadre of professionally trained, knowledgeable inspectors, able to effectively inspect schools and to monitor school improvement throughout Malawi, and (2) a cadre of professionally trained, knowledgeable advisors, able to effectively support school improvement throughout Malawi.
INSPIRE means Integrated School Performance Improvement, Review and Engagement. The overall objective of INSPIRE is to develop integrated planning, multi-stakeholder accountability and the provision of effective support to bring about improvements in the performance of Malawian schools. This project is the culmination of Scottish Government and Link’s investment in monitoring school performance since 2006 and it represents a real opportunity for sustainable and scalable activity which can improve the quality of monitoring and support of schools, at the same time enabling wider community participation in education decision making. Central to the project are the rights and responsibilities of parents, informed by the school standard and school performance information and the opportunity to discuss school performance at school and district level.
The project worked to improve the quality of education in Hoima and Buliisa Districts. The core of the intervention used the School Performance Review (SPR) process to inform school management and governance training and the support and training of teachers, in order to improve school functionality and performance. A lower primary literacy element was introduced into the programme in the last year.
Link Community Development Uganda delivered literacy training in 8 selected schools in Hoima and Buliisa districts as part of the wider TOLSIP project supported by Tullow Oil in the region.
The ‘Language and Literacy in Rural Wolaita’ project will operate in 45 elementary schools in the impoverished Southern Nations and Nationalities Peoples Regional State (SNNPRS), where population growth has placed enormous pressure on land for subsistence farming as well as on all social service provision. Working in 45 schools across two marginalised, densely populated woredas (districts) of Wolaita, this project will reach 41,126 disadvantaged learners. The project delivery approach is distinctive through its support of local delivery structures and its emphasis on capacity-building, engagement and dissemination with community members and policy-makers.
Link Community Development Uganda in partnership with UNITY Project of the Ministry of Education, Science, Technology and Sport (MoESTS) implemented an intervention on “Strengthening of Systems in Education Information Management” in 22 districts under the UNITY project during the period 2010-2011. This intervention involved capacity development support to the 22 District Local Governments in two areas of education information management:
- Decentralised Education Management Information System (DEMIS)
- School Performance Review (SPR)
DEMIS and SPR were seen as complementary interventions that would enhance local management and the use of education information to improve performance of the primary education sector at district, sub-county and lower levels.
& Kamwenge District School Improvement Project (KDSIP)
The focus of the Uganda Rwenzori Region Education Advancement Programme (UREAP) was to improve access to education and the quality of education for all primary pupils in Kamwenge and Kyenjojo Districts in the Rwenzori region of Uganda. This programme built on the success of the Kamwenge District School Improvement Project (KDSIP) in 2007 and 2008 which reached 60 schools in Kamwenge district. Through an integrated package of interventions, UREAP extended Link’s school improvement model not only to all schools in Kamwenge district and but also to all schools in the neighbouring Kyenjojo district (a total of 275 schools).
Link was invited to support the implementation of the Universal Primary Education and administrative decentralisation policies in Uganda. The Masindi District Education Development Project was designed to develop and demonstrate processes which enhance the capacity of District managers, education officers, school inspectors and Headteachers to plan for and deliver school improvement in partnership with the local community.
The Uganda School Improvement Programme (USIP) provided a framework within which Link’s interventions were implemented over the period 2006-2010 in four districts of Masindi, Buliisa, Katakwi and Soroti which were identified as the districts facing the most challenges with primary education. The USIP approach was information-driven and used Ministry of Education and Sport’s information systems to identify priority areas for improvement at the school level. USIP followed a “whole district” approach rather than focusing on just a few schools.
In early 2014, Link Community Development Ethiopia worked with partner agency Whizz Kids Workshop to develop local language Short films exploring the barriers girls face to attending and achieving in school. A group of girls from all the project target areas were selected to write the scripts and receive basic training in film production. The topics include domestic chores, early marriage, status of girls' education, HIV/AIDS, reproductive health and menstruation. The footage was shot on site in schools located in rural Wolaita Zone of south-western Ethiopia.
In partnership with RTI International we are increasing parental and community engagement in supporting student reading. This is part of the Malawi Early Grade Reading Improvement Activity (MERIT) which is designed to assist the Government of Malawi’s efforts to improve reading skills of Malawian students in Standards 1-4 nationwide.
The Increased Capacity for Improved Teaching and Learning (ICITL) project aims to develop context-specific training modules and provide intensive training for school directors and teachers to improve the quality of school mamagement, curriculum delivery, and teachers' professional development.
As part of the Supporting School Improvement in Malawi (SSIM) project funded by Scottish Government, Link Community Development Malawi has trained 456 school stakeholders in 19 schools in Dedza District using the School Management Simulation Game.
To improve the quality of education, this project focuses on improving reading in the mother tongue in the early grades and enhancing the management and functionality of schools using Link’s innovative School Performance Review (SPR) process. Learner outcomes will be tested using the Early Grade Reading Assessment (EGRA). This project also aims to raise awareness of the value of reading among wider school communities in Uganda, particularly supporting the Ugandan Ministry of Education and Sport’s (MoES) initiative to teach in the learner’s mother-tongue.
The goal of the PTAE project is to promote transparency and accountability in education by addressing the heightened concerns among education stakeholders regarding effective governance and efficient management of education resources. The focus of the project in on tracking education resources in the project districts but with emphasis on the Ghana Partnership for Education Grant (GPEG).
Building on our successful School Review and School Improvement Planning work, this practice-based enquiry will help us to understand why some community members are excluded from the school improvement cycle, and how we can help these marginalised groups to play a more active role in their schools.
The Finance and Administration Manager (FAM) will support the delivery of Link’s Girls’ Education Challenge ‘STAGES’ project in Ethiopia. Reporting to the Operations Manager of Link Community Development Ethiopia, the post-holder will provide high level finance support to LCDE to ensure all project activities are delivered on time, on budget and to the highest standard. Some travel within Ethiopia may be required.
ABOUT THE PROJECT
The STEAR project (School Transformation Through Enriching Accountability and Resilience) will identify the skills gap and barriers to success within the Ugandan Government’s school improvement processes in the Education sector, and map out a way forward to improve government and citizen accountability in education delivery.