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The Role of Education in Livelihoods in the Somali Region of Ethiopia

The Role of Education in Livelihoods in the Somali Region of Ethiopia

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This report describes a qualitative study on the role of education in livelihoods in the Somali Region of Ethiopia. The study was conducted for the BRIDGES project (piloting the delivery of quality education services in the developing regional states of Ethiopia) funded by DFID and led by Save the Children UK. The study focus was to understand people’s perceptions as to how education has contributed to livelihoods— of pastoralists, of those exiting pastoralism, and of those seeking to diversify their livelihoods—in the region. Over 60 people from the region were interviewed, including Somali professional males and females, community leaders, community members (males and females) government staff in the Bureau of Education (males), male and female youth both in and out of education and employers and small business owners (male and female).

There was a general perception that education provides a pathway to economic independence and a route out of poverty. Many professionals and students talked about using their education to contribute to their communities and enhance pastoralist livelihoods and many respondents in areas where their educational and livelihood options were limited were adamant that continuing their education was key to a successful future. There is a clear demand for increased educational opportunities in both urban and rural areas. However as education services are being expanded and increasing numbers of Ethiopian Somalis access education, there is a need to create employment opportunities outside of the government sector through the creation of business development prospects and to tackle barriers to employment such as discrimination, particularly towards pastoralists and women. Otherwise, young people, particularly those exiting pastoralism, are likely to become disillusioned, which could lead to their involvement in negative behaviours.

This report is available for download at https://wikis.uit.tufts.edu/confluence/display/FIC/The+Role+of+Education+in+Livelihoods+in+the+Somali+Region+of+Ethiopia.
This report describes a qualitative study on the role of education in livelihoods in the Somali Region of Ethiopia. The study was conducted for the BRIDGES project (piloting the delivery of quality education services in the developing regional states of Ethiopia) funded by DFID and led by Save the Children UK. The study focus was to understand people’s perceptions as to how education has contributed to livelihoods— of pastoralists, of those exiting pastoralism, and of those seeking to diversify their livelihoods—in the region. Over 60 people from the region were interviewed, including Somali professional males and females, community leaders, community members (males and females) government staff in the Bureau of Education (males), male and female youth both in and out of education and employers and small business owners (male and female).

There was a general perception that education provides a pathway to economic independence and a route out of poverty. Many professionals and students talked about using their education to contribute to their communities and enhance pastoralist livelihoods and many respondents in areas where their educational and livelihood options were limited were adamant that continuing their education was key to a successful future. There is a clear demand for increased educational opportunities in both urban and rural areas. However as education services are being expanded and increasing numbers of Ethiopian Somalis access education, there is a need to create employment opportunities outside of the government sector through the creation of business development prospects and to tackle barriers to employment such as discrimination, particularly towards pastoralists and women. Otherwise, young people, particularly those exiting pastoralism, are likely to become disillusioned, which could lead to their involvement in negative behaviours.

This report is available for download at https://wikis.uit.tufts.edu/confluence/display/FIC/The+Role+of+Education+in+Livelihoods+in+the+Somali+Region+of+Ethiopia.

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Categories:Types, Research
Published by: Feinstein International Center on Jul 14, 2011
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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07/07/2013

 
Strengthening the humanity and dignity of people in crisis through knowledge and practice
JUNE 2011
The Role o Education in Livelihoodsin the Somali Region o Ethiopia
Elanor Jackson
A report for the BRIDGES Project 
 
Feinstein International Center 2
 
©2011 Feinstein International Center. All Rights Reserved.Fair use o this copyrighted material includes its use or non-commercial educationalpurposes, such as teaching, scholarship, research, criticism, commentary, and newsreporting. Unless otherwise noted, those who wish to reproduce text and image flesrom this publication or such uses may do so without the Feinstein InternationalCenter’s express permission. However, all commercial use o this material and/orreproduction that alters its meaning or intent, without the express permission o theFeinstein International Center, is prohibited.Feinstein International CenterTuts University200 Boston Ave., Suite 4800Medord, MA 02155USAtel: +1 617.627.3423ax: +1 617.627.3428fc.tuts.edu
 
The Role o Education in Livelihoods in the Somali Region o Ethiopia 3
Acknowledgements
This study was unded by the Department or InternationalDevelopment as part o the BRIDGES pilot project, implemented bySave the Children UK, Mercy Corps, and Islamic Relie in theSomali Region.The author especially appreciates the support and ideas o AlisonNapier o Tuts University in Addis Ababa. Thanks also to MercyCorps BRIDGES project sta in Jijiga and Gode, Islamic Relie sta and driver in Hargelle, Save the Children UK sta in Dire Dawa, andthe Tuts driver. In particular, thanks to Hussein rom Mercy Corpsin Jijiga or organizing so many o the interviews.Thanks also to Andy Catley rom Tuts University and to Save theChildren UK, Islamic Relie, Mercy Corps, and Tuts University sta in Addis Ababa or their ideas and logistical assistance. Thanks also toTina Wallace.Above all, thank you to all those inormants in the Somali Regionwho contributed their time and personal stories and to Asmaa JamaMahamud or her expert translation skills and invaluable insights.
Disclaimer
The views expressed in the report are those o the author and do notnecessarily reect DFID policies or the views o Save the ChildrenUK, Islamic Relie, Mercy Corps, and Tuts University.The names o many o the inormants have been changed.Children and adults gave their inormed consent or the use o their photographs in this report.

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