Health Education and Reconciliation Project
The Health Education and Reconciliation (HEAR) project worked closely with education officers, school administrators, teachers and communities to improve school management and teaching methods, as well as addressing the psychosocial needs of pupils. It reached nearly 93,000 children in its seven years.
Originally designed to support the implementation of the 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement through community-based health and education services in the three areas of Abyei, South Kordofan, and Blue Nile States, HEAR shifted its focus to serving internally displaced persons and returnees in Agok, Warrap, Unity, and Northern and Western Bahr el Ghazal States after South Sudan gained its independence in July 2011.
The USAID-funded project taught more than 1,500 school teachers from 201 schools to provide psychosocial support and incorporate student-centered lessons on conflict resolution and violence prevention in addition to health, hygiene and English—South Sudan’s new official language.
It trained 195 parent-teacher associations to make school development plans, write funding proposals and recognize their responsibility for school management. These groups have made huge contributions of local materials for classroom construction and local development projects like latrines, fences and water storage facilities.
HEAR also provided Vitamin A and deworming tablets to nearly 28,000 school children, and insecticide-treated bed nets to more than 22,000, drastically reducing the number of pupils who missed school due to illness.
HEAR laid the foundation for strengthened education systems and increased community capacity and engagement with an eye toward promoting peace and reconciliation in a country strained by decades of war. It achieved these results despite encountering infrastructure, logistic and security hurdles common in conflict-affected areas.
From class to community, a teacher learns to heal
In the blazing days of South Sudan’s hot season, families retreat for naps in their rakubas, outdoor structures used for relaxing in the shade. But Dorina Joseph, the only teacher in the village of Aweil Jedid, has put hers to another use: providing free education to children who cannot afford official school fees. Learn More...
South Sudan: Better education, health for 93,000 kids
JUBA, SOUTH SUDAN– Community leaders, education officials and the U.S. Embassy celebrated Aug. 29 the close of a successful health and education project that improved the lives of nearly 93,000 children. Learn More...