Final five organisations and their partners awarded implementation grants

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Education Out Loud
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Mike Koloffel
Mike Kolöffel
Five civil society organisations and their partners have been selected for grants from Education Out Loud to support civil society’s role in promoting the transparency and accountability of national education sector policy and implementation. 

With a total of USD 4.8 million awarded, these five organisations and their partners will work to strengthen civil society capacity to push for more accountable, participatory, and transparent education sector policy and implementation in their respective national contexts.

Facts

Implemented by Oxfam IBIS, with a total allocation of USD 72.8 million from the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), Education Out Loud is the world’s largest fund dedicated to supporting civil society’s role in shaping education policy to better meet the needs of communities with a focus on the most vulnerable and marginalised people.

The five organisations were amongst 10 shortlisted alliances undergoing the Year Zero process where a small number of applicants are awarded support to develop their concept notes into full project proposals. After undergoing the six-month process, these five projects were selected to receive full implementation grants by an independent panel of technical experts with backgrounds in gender, human rights, programme management, research, advocacy, and capacity building.

Education Out Loud received an impressive 461 applications from organisations based in 53 different countries for the open call for applications under Operational Component 2. Under this component, grants are provided to organisations working to improve policy dialogue, increase the availability of information sources, and mobilise citizens as rights holders to play an active role in monitoring implementation of education policies and financing.

With the selection of these five projects, all available funds under Operational Component 2 have now been awarded to a total of ten projects.

We are very happy to welcome the five new Education Out Loud partners and look forward to working with them. Read more about the projects and organisations below.

1. Citizen-led Action for Educational Accountability and Responsiveness in Ghana (CLEAR)

Country: Ghana

Implementing organisations: School for Life (lead), YEFL-Ghana & Ghana Developing Communities Association (GDCA)

The project: The project aims to address the issue of inequality in basic education in remote, rural parts of Ghana which affects children and girls in particular. With citizens lacking relevant information on education policy frameworks and service delivery systems, the transparency and bottom-up accountability in the education sector are weak in these areas and there are limited spaces for citizen participation and engagement with education authorities and service providers.

The project focuses on increasing citizen capacity and engagement in education policy processes enabling them to hold authorities accountable and make their voices heard. Through this and by working to strengthen transparency and accountability, the project aims to increase equitable access to quality basic education for children in rural areas.

The alliance:
School for Life works to strengthen civil society’s role in improving access to quality education by delivering, demonstrating, and advocating for innovative and inclusive approaches to education. The organisation has experience with a range of areas such as functional literacy approaches, education access and quality, accountability in the education sector, and fair allocation of resources.

GDCA is an umbrella organisation with five subsidiary organisations working to empower citizens in deprived communities in northern Ghana through social, political, and economic development. The organisation has experience and capacity in community mobilisation, governance, and social accountability work.

YEfL-Ghana works to empower youth in rural, deprived areas through capacity building and networking. The organisation is experienced in creating spaces for local voices and mobilising citizens and youth for advocacy.

2. e!quality- Education (e)quality through multilevel evidence-based advocacy for public investment

Country: Bangladesh

Implementing organisations: Institute of Informatics and Development (IID) (lead), #NextGenEdu, Teach For Bangladesh (TFB), Udayan Swabolombee Sangstha (USS) & Multipurpose Socio-Economic Development Association (MSEDA)

The project: The e!quality project, funded by Education Out Loud, aims to address the paradox of high enrollment rate with low levels of quality and equality in education in Bangladesh. The project focuses on empowering specifically disadvantaged groups in the country, including ethnic and marginalised groups as well as internally displaced migrants, by strengthening the role of civil society in pushing for an equitable, resilient, and future-ready education system.

The project will collect empirical evidence to reinforce civil society’s voices on transparency and accountability of education sector policy commitments and budget allocation. By working to bring unheard voices of disadvantaged groups forward and strengthen capacity building and monitoring initiatives of civil society, the project aims to promote equity in education.

The alliance:
IID is a public-policy think-tank promoting innovation in research, communication, and participation to ensure evidence-based and participatory public policy. The organisation’s vision is to inquire evidence for policy, inform people and policymakers, and involve the public in public policy processes.

#NextGenEdu is a global learning platform for partners to share proven and potential ideas, policy directives, and strategies in education that enable ideas to nurture and grow.

Teach for Bangladesh works to reduce education disparity of the poorest children in Bangladesh, while USS works with employment of marginalised communities and religious minority groups through skills development and establishing human rights.

Lastly, MSEDA focuses on reducing discrimination in education and is specialized in working for the right to education for children in tea estates.

3. Strengthening CSOs for Educational Policy Accountability and Implementation Project (PRO-RePEM)

Country: Benin

Implementing organisations: DEDRAS Benin (lead), Social Watch Benin & Woord en Daad

The project: Low citizen participation in monitoring and dialogue on education policies is a big challenge in Benin. The project focuses on strengthening the role of civil society organisations in education policy dialogue and processes by strengthening and further build Benin’s Education Observatory, a grouping of civil society organisations in Benin working to strategically monitor the national education system and make suggestions for reform.

The goal is to make sure that civil society organisations are directly involved in education policy processes and that citizens together with civil society organisations are able to make concrete proposals and monitor effective implementation of policies supporting inclusive and participatory policy processes in Benin.

The alliance:
The lead organisation of the alliance, DEDRAS, is present in 54 municipalities of Benin and has implemented several projects focused on community mobilisation, enrollment and retention of children, and capacity building of actors in the education system.

Social Watch Benin works to promote citizen control of public action and gender equity in order to bring about political changes favorable to socio-economic development and has expertise in polling and citizen monitoring of public action. The organisation has worked on a variety of projects focused on issues such as gender budgeting, implementation and monitoring of public policies, and implementation of accountability tools.

Lastly, Woord en Daad, a partner of DEDRAS for more than a decade, has expertise in education policy and influence as well as capacity building of local organisations.

4. Students Acting for Accountability and Quality of Education

Country: Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

Implementing organisations: Centre de Recherche sur l’Anti-Corruption (CERC)

The project: The project responds to the impact that corruption and lack of transparency have on young people’s access to education and motivation to participate in their communities. Low education outcomes for youth, as well as poverty and inequality, are significant problems in the DRC. This project aims to improve accessibility of education infrastructure and quality of education services to address these problems.

Focusing on supporting and empowering youth, the project aims to improve responsiveness and accountability from education service providers, and encouraging an open and transparent education system that is receptive to students’ needs.

The alliance:
CERC aims to fight corruption in the DRC by working with communities and young people to build the skills necessary to hold their leaders accountable and cultivate a new generation of ethical leaders. The organisation’s ambition is to advance knowledge on the causes and consequences of corruption and support the development of new anti-corruption policies and initiatives in the country.

Furthermore, CERC works to empower young people with skills and tools to create positive change towards more accountable, open, and inclusive institutions and public services. Since CERC was founded in 2017, it has grown into a network of over 1000 young people supporting each other in monitoring vital projects and services where they live.

5. Voices of the Educational Community: Towards transparency and accountability of educational policy in Nicaragua

Country: Nicaragua

Implementing organisations: Coordinadora de ONG que trabaja con la Niñez y la Adolescencia (CODENI) (lead), Centro de Comunicación y Educación Popular (CANTERA), Foro de Educación y Desarrollo Humano (FEDH-IPN), Fundación Centro de Atención y Formación Profesional de los niños de la Calle (Fundación NITCA), Asociación Niñas y Niños del Fortín (ANF), Asociación La Amistad, Asociación Nicaragüense para el Desarrollo Sostenible (ANIDES), Centro de Servicios Educativos en Salud y Medioambiente (CESESMA) & Centro de Educación y Comunicación (La Cuculmeca)

The project: The project, funded by Education Out Loud, addresses challenges of shrinking civic space as a result of the political climate and Covid-19 pandemic in Nicaragua. The project seeks to create spaces for analysis and reflection through meetings, forums, and other types of participation to enable local and national actors to mobilise and define common agendas on educational matters. Through this, the project aims to secure that the human right to education is promoted and that educational gaps are reduced.

With a specific focus on addressing gender gaps and rural-urban gaps in education in the country, the project will promote local and national advocacy of children and adolescents, the educational community, and social actors in the fulfillment of the human right to education.

The alliance:
CODENI is a coordinating body made up of 17 different non-governmental organisations whose common interest is the promotion, defense, and protection of children’s rights. Its mission is to contribute to political, economic, social, and cultural transformations so that children and adolescents can fully exercise their human rights. CODENI has presence in 54 different municipalities of Nicaragua and experience with a range of areas such as monitoring of public policies and investment, transparency and accountability, promoting gender equity, community mobilisation for advocacy, research, and capacity building of member organisations.

The eight partner organisations will be working with local coordination for the development of the project and have different areas of expertise including advocacy, education for children in child labor, training of youth, and education in rural communities.