Community Learning Centers (CLC) are places of learning and community development, where a variety of Adult Learning and Education (ALE) services can be delivered to the community, such as functional adult literacy, livelihoods and business skills training, savings and credit schemes, libraries, agricultural and health services, etc. The Recommendation on Adult Learning and Education (RALE, UNESCO General Conference of 2015) states that ‘Adult learning and Education is a core component of lifelong learning’ and member states are advised to establish appropriate structures such as CLC for delivering ALE services, and at the same time, encourage adults to use CLCs for learning and development. Therefore, it is acknowledged CLCs have a strong role to play in ALE, and particularly in ALE service delivery at community level.
The CLC model was transferred from Morocco to Ethiopia through a peer learning process that was supported by DVV International. After adapting it to the local context in Ethiopia, and later in Uganda, it was piloted by both countries. Today, CLCs are recognized as hubs for lifelong learning that deliver a wide range of integrated services based on local community needs and national development agendas in these two countries. By creating places such as CLCs, ALE services can be delivered in an integrated manner with our partners. CLC forms one programme component in the national integrated ALE programmes in Ethiopia and Uganda. In Tanzania, the CLC model has been introduced through exchange visits to Uganda and Ethiopia and Tanzanian government as well as other key stakeholders in the ALE sector are appreciating the concept.
While in Uganda and Ethiopia governments put an emphasis on establishing CLCs country wide, Tanzania has launched its first CLC in December 2022. A second CLC will be launched early 2023. DVV International facilitates the process of further establishing and institutionalising CLCs in the three countries by organising exchange of experiences and peer learning among the three countries and also among Districts and regions within a country.
The singing, clapping and the dancing all made for an exciting event as two community learning centres and one community learning hub were launched in an Adult Learning and Education (ALE) pilot project funded by DVV International. “Elimu endelevu kwa watu wote Tanzania” is a slogan that means “life-long learning for all in Tanzania, and this was placed on all the three Community Learning Centres and one learning hub during the official launches in 2022 and 2023.
“The Ministry of Education, Science and Technology’s (MoEST’s) role is to provide revised guidelines that will be used in management and operations of Community Learning Centres (CLCs) to manage the quality of Education provided by CLCs. They would also ensure that facilitators at the learning centres are capacitated.”
Ms. Felista Mapunda, Focal person, Adult Education in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology
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The Mpigi District Council Office towers above the communities, perched on a hill, about 60 kilimeters from Kampala city centre. The Programme and Partnership Advisor (PPA), DVV International, Ms. Rita Kahurananga flanked by Joseph Kifampa, Programme Manager, DVV International Uganda were greeted with a warm smile at the entrance of the District Council by Annet Nabuuma, DCDO Mpigi District. It is noteworthy to know that the district Community Learning Center has been maintained over the years. This adds to the impeccable way all the senior and other officers handle their duties and demeanor.
One could not help but pay attention to detail as we entered the DCDO’s office, complete with a chart that promotes “equal opportunities” for all at the Parish level. Mainstreaming gender and inclusive programming are a hallmark of this district council. With much enthusiasm, the DCDO shared briefly the different programmes being administered by the council, specific to community development and social welfare at Community Learning Centers. Capacity building and skills development form a large component of the DCDO’s interventions. The Ministry of Labour, Gender, and Social Development (MGLSD) is the ministry taking the lead in administering Adult Learning and Education (ALE) in Uganda, in partnership with key stakeholders as DVV International at the macro, meso and micro levels. This was exemplified when about 50 stakeholders met during four-day workshop convened by MGLSD, supported by DVV International Uganda. The purpose was to review the draft version of the National Adult Learning and Communications Strategy (NALCES).
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