This morning we were honoured to receive a visit from Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International Development (DfID), James Wharton, during his brief 2 day visit to South Sudan.
He met GESS Team Leader, Akuja, at Africa Inland Church Primary School in Juba to see the positive impact of the Girls’ Education South Sudan programme, funded by the UK government, as well as the need for continued support.
The Minister met GESS beneficiaries, including girls, the Deputy Head Teacher, and School Management Committee members. He was able to witness the transforming effect of GESS Capitation Grants and Cash Transfers through constructions such as sleeping quarters for teachers, and a private changing room for girls, as well as a plethora of teaching and learning equipment. The Deputy Head Teacher, Uthmann Kiribeda, highlighted how the school population at the school has consistently risen over the past three years, thanks to improvements to the infrastructure, as well as better quality teaching and learning materials, partly attributed to GESS Capitation Grants.
Elizabeth Aguil, GESS Cash Transfer beneficiary, gave her heartfelt thanks for the support given to girls in the form of cash grants, expressing that it allowed her to purchase scholastic materials for the new academic year. When asked what she would like to do when she leaves school, Elizabeth said that she hopes to be South Sudan’s Ambassador to the UK.
60 girls from the school received GESS Cash Transfers in November 2016, each receiving 2,300 SSP (roughly £23). This money has helped to reduce the financial barrier to education that many girls in South Sudan face.
Through the GESS programme, the Minister was able to see positive impact of the UK government’s investment in South Sudan.