For the last two years, the British and Foreign School Society (BFSS) has generously supported our two educational projects in Taroudannt: the School Support programme and Pre-school programme. We are delighted to announce that our grant application for a further two yearsâ funding has been approved by the BFSS, which will help us continue to provide the children of Taroudannt with these essential services. To celebrate our new grant, we thought we would take this opportunity to look back on the past six months, showing why our educational projects at Centre Afaq are so important to the children and community they serve.
Our School Support programme provides regular sessions to assist students between the ages of 6 and 18. The sessions provide homework support and more specific support in areas where students may be struggling. Over the last six months, there have been 50 children regularly attending the homework support sessions at the Centre, including eight new students.
School Support classes in June and July were dedicated to exam revision, with local teachers coming in to help. Our School Support teacher tries to collect the school reports of as many of the children as possible, and we were thrilled to see how many children have improved their overall marks between the first and second semesters of this school year.
The last six months has also seen the exciting launch of our new mentoring programme, which the BFSS will be funding for the next two years. The grant will allow us to train local teachers to give one to one support on a voluntary basis to children identified by the Centre team as lacking stable relationships in their lives. The programme started up in May with four mentoring couples, and we are looking forward to expanding it in the next two years.
Our Pre-school programme provides accessible education for young children from disadvantaged backgrounds. It provides a safe space for children aged 3-5 years to learn social and interpersonal skills together with early literacy and numeracy skills. These children would otherwise miss out on this important preparation for the transition to primary school as their families cannot afford to send them to the private pre-schools which is where the majority of Moroccan children go. We have 15 children attending our pre-school including seven new children enrolled full time at the beginning of this new school year. The pre-school programme also has a wider impact for many of the families. Having their children enrolled in the pre-school has enabled many mothers to find work outside of the home; out of a total of thirteen mothers, nine of these have found employment.
MCT and Centre Afaq would like to express our sincere gratitude to the British and Foreign School Society for its continued, kind support. We are looking forward to another successful school year!