Self-financing of basic education for minority workers

This project explores how workers from a minority such as the Gabooye in Somaliland can co-produce worker education suited to their needs as part of an educational institution run by them that also works for their minority rights and which is contextualised in relation to sustainable development. It is an important case of relevance far beyond Somaliland to anyone concerned with minority co-production of their own education for sustainable development, both autonomously and linked to an international collaboration such as TESF.

The marginalized minority Gabooye community in Somaliland faces a high degree of political, cultural, and socio-economic discrimination which has led to the denial of their rights based on the constitution of Somaliland and international human rights instruments. As a result, the Gabooye community do not get their fair share of political and livelihood opportunities, be it political representation, protection, health, economic, education and employment opportunities. The result is a voiceless, morally and economically disadvantaged and marginalized minority community, whose rights have been denied and whose life is deteriorating.  Minorities in Somaliland face discrimination which causes poverty and lack of access to even basic formal education. Minorities include Gabooye, that is, those working in occupations treated as lower caste such as metal working, leather working and hair cutting. They have even less access to education than others in a context where most find it difficult to have access to education as it is. Minority workers pass on their skills to each other through informal education

We are a minority initiative and minority-led organization, advocating and lobbying for their rights and empowering through awareness raising and capacity-building programmes, with education integrated into that.

Against this background the main research question was ‘Does increasing the capacity of technically skilled minority workers by giving them access to numeracy and literacy education improve their livelihoods and enable them to further increase their access to education in a virtuous circle?’  We found that this was indeed the case, through the co-production of a suitable and inclusive curriculum which meets the specific needs and aspirations of the skilled workers. 


Key Themes:
Sustainable Livelihoods
Location: somalia