Widows and Orphans Development Foundation

Education support for orphans and destitute children

“A common consequence of widowhood in traditional societies is the withdrawal of children from school. Girls are likely to be the first affected; they are needed to care for younger siblings while the widowed mother begs or works, or they must find work themselves. Girls who leave school too soon are more likely to become child brides and child mothers, potentially causing damage to their reproductive health and limiting their chances for economic autonomy.” (United Nations Division for the Advancement of Women, 2001).

Widows who live in poverty and destitute families withdraw their children from school for two main reasons. First, because they cannot afford to provide the educational needs for their children such as uniforms, books, school fees, and other related needs. Secondly, because they need their children to help them (mothers) earn an income to support the family.

In order to help widows and destitute families headed by women reduce the burden of taking care of the schooling costs of their children, WODF provides material support to orphans and destitute children as a way of retaining them in school.

In addition to educational material, girls are provided also with sanitary materials that will help them when they are in their monthly cycle which affects the school attendance for the majority of girls in rural areas.

Missing classes because of lack of protective gears during their monthly period might affect their performance in school in the long run. With this kind of support, the money that their mothers will serve from the schooling costs of their children will be used for other family necessities thus relieving the mothers from the burden of costs to some extent.

Required support for orphans’ education

€45 covers the cost of a complete set of school uniforms per orphan per year (two shirts, two skirts or two pairs of shorts, two pairs of shoes, two pairs of sox, one school bag, and school supplies namely note books / exercise books, pens, pencils, and mathematical set) .

€27 can cover the cost of sanitary pads and under pants per girl per year and ensure an orphaned girl does not miss school when she is in her monthly period.

€25 is enough to cover health insurance for an orphan per year.