Right now, one in four children in Uganda, and one in three in Zambia, attend secondary school. Around 22 million children of secondary school age in Sub-Saharan Africa are not in classrooms and it is, in a large part, due to the proximity and cost of state schools. 

  • 7 in 10 (68%) are the first generation in their family to attend secondary school
  • 52% are girls
  • 2 in 5 students (38%) come from families that live below the extreme poverty line ($1.25/day); 86% come from families that live on less than $2.50/day
  • 68% of students parents’ are self-employed – the majority in subsistence agriculture or fishing
  • 55% of students spend more than an hour traveling to school every day; 1 in 5 spends more than two hours getting to school
  • 57% live over an hour from the nearest health facility

Read Deborah's story

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Deborah is a student at a PEAS school, and since starting at PEAS she has discovered a hidden talent that she hopes will open up her future. She is a dancer. 

Deborah is not only interested in dance, she also has a unique and important view on gender equality.

Read Fatuma's story 

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A commitment to democracy guides Bridge School’s head girl Fatuma in the role that she took on last year.

Voted in by fellow students, the 16 year old explains the spirit of co-operation that she has experienced since coming to the school two years ago.

Read Gednight's story

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Peering through the flaps of a polytunnel greenhouse at Kithoma School, 14-year-old Gednight is enthusiastically explaining how water is drip-fed from a rainwater tank to keep rows of tomato plants irrigated.

Gednight, who is in S2, is one of a cohort of pupils at Kithoma chosen to be involved in the crop-growing project that generates an additional income for the school.