Sub-Saharan Africa contains just over 10% of the world’s population, but is home to more than 60% of all people living with HIV – 25.8 million. In 2005, an estimated 3.2 million Africans became newly infected, while 2.4 million died of AIDS. This World Bank statistics underscores the enormous need for AIDS education in the region. In Kenya, where roughly 10% of the adult population (2 million people) is infected, prevention is the only hope for the next generation. The facts about HIV prevention and all the associated life skills are perhaps the most critical part of our students’ education.
The Kenya Education Fund’s Teacher Training Program is a free service provided to all schools attended by KEF kids. Our trainers are experienced health professionals that have worked for the Ministry of Health and local VCT’s (Voluntary Counseling and Testing Clinics). They work with teachers to develop student-centered public health curricula. In so doing, trainers and teachers focus upon what we call “Life Skills” – those essential aspects of social interaction and learning that include the development of attitudes, values and knowledge needed to make life’s most important decisions. Our trainers will teach educators creative exercises and games designed to build their students’ skills in areas such as communication, self-confidence, goal-setting, resisting peer-pressure and preventing illness. By transferring the skills of effective HIV/AIDS education to teachers, we are supporting a sustainable approach to prevention.
Each school is also expected to help their students form AIDS Awareness Clubs in which students peer-teach, perform AIDS related dramas in the school and community, and collect educational resources to be made accessible to the entire student body.