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Children in Kenya’s urban slums start Zippy’s Friends

By : Partnership for Children   Nov 3, 2021

Thanks to a new partnership between Partnership for Children, Premier Academy, Nairobi and SHOFCO, a Kenyan NGO, Zippy’s Friends is now running in two schools in the urban slum areas of Mathare and Kibera, Nairobi.

At the tuition free SHOFCO academies, 547 girls from pre-kindergarten through to 8th grade receive a free high-quality education which now includes social and emotion well-being for the younger girls. The SHOFCO teachers were trained to run Zippy’s Friends by trainers from Premier Academy, our Kenyan Partner organisation. The training took place on a Saturday at Premier Academy and the SHOFCO teachers benefitted from ‘excellent facilities, great meals and a great learning environment’. In total 15 staff members from the two academies were trained – two head teachers, one school counsellor, four school social workers and eight teachers.

Hecky Odera, Education Director at SHOFCO, wrote to us after the training; ‘A big thank you for having organised and trained our teachers on Partnership for Children's Skills for Life programme (Zippy's Friends). I have had a debrief with our teachers who attended the session and their testimonies are overwhelming. It was an eye opener and they fully appreciated it. We are very thankful to Partnership for Children for allowing us access to this rich curriculum.’

Premier Academy became our first African partner organisation in 2019. The school has a record of excellent academic achievement, but Zippy’s Friends is their first programme to be taught specifically to promote the children’s emotional wellbeing. To date over 100 children have benefitted from Zippy’s Friends and as well as training and supporting the SHOFCO teachers as they being teaching Zippy, the Premier Academy teachers will be starting Apple’s Friends with their own pupils in November after a successful online training day.

SHOFCO teacher training

Shazma Mukri, Lead School Counsellor at Premier Academy commented; ‘It was very insightful and our teachers left with valuable information. We really appreciated the efforts you took in making the sessions interactive and fun.’

Increasing our reach and depth in resource poor settings is a key strategic goal for Partnership for Children and we are delighted that, by working in partnership with Premier Academy and SHOFCO, we have been able to introduce our Skills for Life programmes into two schools who are working to improve the lives of vulnerable children.