Non-governmental Organizations’ Educational Contribution to Needy Primary School Children in Voi Division, Kenya
Parents of needy children lived below poverty line. Consequently their children were denied the opportunity to enjoy increased access in aspects not included in free Primary education (FPE) package. This descriptive survey study sought first to quantify NGOs contribution to education in Voi in aspects not included in the free education package and secondly to find out if there were alternative sources of assistance in the absence of NGOs assistance. The population of the study included those who had received NGO assistance only in Voi division comprising of 30 schools, 100 class teachers, and 474 (287 boys and 187 girls) needy children, their 398 parents / guardians. The overall total target population number was 1005 respondents. The researcher used purposive sampling technique as part of multistage sampling procedure together with the simple random technique and the random assignment technique to select 100% NGO managers (3) from Plan international, Global Education Partnership and World Vision, 30% of head teachers (10), teachers (30), parents (119) and needy children (142) that is 86 boys and 56 girls, from NGO assisted public primary schools (10): Sagalla location‟s Gimba, Kalela, Sagalla, George Sowa and Gideon Mosi and Kasighau location‟s Kajire, Kale, Itinyi, Rukanga and Miasenyi. The researcher developed five (5) research instruments: two interview schedules for NGO managers and head teachers and three focus group discussion guides to collect primary data. Secondary data was collected through reviewed literature, from books, newspapers, journals, bulletins, theses and the internet. Data were collected through observations, in depth interviews and focus group discussion. Quantitative data presentation took the form of percentages, means, frequencies, tables, pictures and pie charts. The NGOs contributed through advocacy, uniform, desks, text books, pens and rulers, school feeding programme, free medical camps, boreholes, water tanks constructing classrooms/kitchens, employing and paying the PTA/NGO teaching staff, which helped improve access and completion by increasing enrolment and completion and lowered drop out. However, as girls‟ access and completion trends in Voi division improved that of the boys dropped sharply. The study found low 46 % male participation compared to 54% female participation in education in Voi. Alternative sources of assistance in the absence of NGOs‟, merry go rounds, small scale micro enterprises (SMEs) women groups, profit making enterprises or organizations like Taita Discovery Centre, Tycoon ranchers, Corporate bodies like Safaricom, Airtel, Wild Life Works, Churches, Constituency Development Fund, Voi Municipal Council, Free Primary Education, and self sustainability using the capacity building skills as taught by outgoing NGOs. The researcher recommends that the NGOs, government, parents and the communities should consider building boarding primary schools in Voi. The government should bring to book those who have been involved with the FPE corruption scandals in order for donors to build faith in the Kenyan government again. Companies, groups or individuals should consider assisting the needy children in Voi access education. Finally, parents of needy children should take responsibility over their children and see NGOs as filling the gap left by the government, themselves and the community.