Adolescent Mothers' Education lnitiative (AMEI)
Education Out Loud component OC3 aims to create a stronger global and transnational enabling environment for national civil society advocacy and transparency efforts.
This objective seeks to vertically integrate civil society alliances, representing diverse actors, in transnational policy debates to facilitate the inclusion of citizen voices, informed by their lived realities, in transnational spaces. This will lead to the promotion of policy agendas that are more responsive to the interests of citizens as rights holders.
OC3 also seeks to strengthen social accountability mechanisms, spaces and institutions that will follow up on global, regional or national commitments related to the right to equitable and quality education.
The Adolescent Mothers' Education lnitiative (AMEI) responds to this call by targeting policy and practie around the continued education of Pregnant Girls and Adolescent Mothers (PGAM) in the Southern and East Africa regions targeting Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Uganda and Zimbabwe.
COVID19 has exacerbated the issue of PGAM with UNESCO reporting that at least 11 million primary to tertiay education girls are at risk of not returning to education following COVID 19 school closures.
These PGAM face various barriers to continued education including the absence of strong and effective strategies for implementation of laws and policies that support reentry and continued learning; limited capacity and resources to implement policies; absence of an enabling environment to support continued education e.g. childcare; discriminatory policies e.g. conditional reentry; negative religious and social norms, and attitudes; and stigma, which deter reentry to education. Consequently, PGAM are failing to enjoy their right to education, presenting a variety of negative implications for theirs, and their children's wellbeing.
AMEI will bring together local, national and transnational (regional and global) actors for positive change in girls' education by challenging policy and practice barriers to access to education for PGAM.
AMEI will bring to bear data and learning from the national level Right to Education Index research and the local level social accountability approach - Citizen Voice and Action (CVA) - to inform the design, formulation, implementation and monitoring of right to education policies. Using CVA, AMEI empowers girls and communities as advocacy agents who will, through a phased approach, start to form at the local level, a local-to-global advocacy alliance, focused on the continued education of PGAM.
AMEI will engage in shared learning and advocacy through national level platforms such as Local Education Groups, Joint Sector Reviews, and the Regional Education Learning lnitiative Uganda Chapter meetings among others.
At the transnational level, AMEI will subscribe to frameworks such as the AU's Agenda 2063, the UN's Agenda 2030, African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child and the SDGs to engage Regional (AU, SADC, EAC and their relevant Commissions) and Global (GPE, FCDO, UN) actors with data, learning and recommendations from the voices of marginalized groups, in a process of co-construction of design and practical implementation of policies to foster improved realization of the right to education for PGAM, thus benefitting the millions of girls failing to enjoy their right to education in Southern and Eastern Africa.