Women Connect Initiative (WCI) and Gender Policy Unit (GPU)

Fellow: Victor Osae Ihidero (WCI) and Timothy Elisha (GPU)

Grant Year: 2019

Location: Kudan Local Government Area, Kaduna State, Nigeria

Organization: Women Connect Initiative (WCI) and Gender Policy Unit (GPU)

Project title: Advocacy for Compulsory Technical Education for Rural Women (ACT 4 Women)

Project summary: According to the 2016 Gender Economic Index Report, rural women in Kaduna State are the most economically disadvantaged group, especially in the Kudan Local Government Area. Women Connect Initiative (WCI) and the Gender Policy Unit (GPU) will work together to improve education and employment opportunities for girls and women in Kudan through government funding for rural vocational and technical education. Surajo Yahaya, Educational Secretary of Kudan noted that 63% of the students that dropped out of school between 2016 and 2018 were girls, mainly due to early marriage or lack of support from family. As a result, many rural women lack employable skills and become economically dependent on men for survival. There are Kaduna State government funds budgeted for technical and vocational learning education for women, but they are not used for that purpose and are instead being used for local affairs, which have no direct impact on the lives of women in Kudan. WCI and GPU learned from Local Government Area Chairman (Hon. Shuaibu Bawa Jaja) that some of these funds are reallocated to male schools where, according to him, “they are more needed.” WCI and GPU are advocating for the Executive Director of Kudan Local Government Area to ensure the judicious use of budgeted funds for vocational and technical education for rural girls and women ages 16 to 45 in Kudan to equip them with the skills to ensure financial stability and self-reliance. In year one, with the proper use of government funds, they aim to have approximately 4,300 girls and women in Kudan enrolled in technical and vocational education, with a goal of more than 15,700 girls and women enrolled in the years to follow.