South Sudan, Education

    Education for the future: schools and children's center

    Project Number: 179.1010

    Many public schools in South Sudan have had to close because of the conflict in the country. Schools run by church institutions operate under difficult conditions. Around 70 percent of children of primary school age do not attend classes. Most of them are girls. The Presbyterian Church of South Sudan (PCOSS), Mission 21's partner church, is involved in building and renovating classrooms. It also trains teachers in dealing with traumatized children. Especially children who live on the streets without any support are at high risk of being recruited by the military. PCOSS runs a children's center called Muhaba Centre, where children receive refuge, education and psychosocial support.

    Background information

    The level of education in South Sudan is one of the lowest in the world. Around 73 percent of the population cannot read or write. Under these conditions, it is difficult to kick-start the country's development and successfully advance personal careers. Boys and young men in particular, who are unable to attend school, are exposed to the high risk of having to take part in the conflict as child soldiers. According to the UN, almost 20,000 child soldiers have been recruited in recent years. It is particularly difficult for girls to attend school. They are often not given the opportunity to attend secondary school because they have to work in the family. Girls are often married off at an early age. This is largely out of necessity, as it is no longer possible to provide for all family members. The bride price often helps families out of financial hardship. The children's center offers the students education, food and a family atmosphere. A "safe haven" where they can also be children. At the Muhaba Center, the children are supported by professional educators. In the first year, the children stay at the center, are taught there and receive intensive care, as many suffer from trauma. After that, the children go to the surrounding state schools in Renk. School fees, school uniforms and all materials are provided by the center. In addition to regular hot meals, they receive homework supervision and play activities. The caregivers also live in the Muhaba home and are always there for the children.

    Project goals

    The PCOSS educational programs give children and young people the opportunity to shape their lives according to their own wishes. Some of the children have already been able to go to university. Thanks to the opportunity for education, young people have countless possibilities to shape their lives and actively participate in social processes and decisions.

    Target group

    After 20 years of working with boys in Muhaba, girls were given the opportunity to study at the Children's Center for the first time in 2018 and at least live there during the day. Girls in particular have less chance of getting an education. Families often have to prioritize who can go to school and girls often miss out, but girls also have wishes and dreams for the future. Since the girls' school building was completed in 2023, there has been room for 24 girls to sleep and study in the building.


    The PCOSS Department of Education implements the following activities:

    • Creation of "zones of peace" for children.
    • Strengthening primary and secondary schools as well as teachers in order to raise the level of education.
    • Care for children growing up without family support
    • Trainings for school staff concerning new teaching methods and school administration
    • Care and support for children in difficult living conditions

    Project progress

    Due to a lack of sleeping facilities and separate washrooms, schoolgirls at the Muhaba Center have not been able to spend the night at the center. However, walking home can be dangerous, which is why it was decided to build a girls' house, construction of which began in 2021. The new girls' building was completed in 2023. There were small delays in construction due to inflation and material shortages caused by the war in Sudan. The girls' building was officially opened in November 2023. It offers space for 24 girls and is fully occupied.

    > to the project film


    South Sudan

    • Around 11 million inhabitants
    • 73% of the population cannot read and write
    • Over 7 million people in South Sudan are under 19 years old

    Project budget 2024

    CHF 161,000


    csm florence hakim 2 3 0b1791bb9d

    Guliba Florence Hakim

    Coordinator South Sudan
    ► Email


    Jacqueline Brunner

    Responsible church partnerships;
    Responsible legacies and bequests

    Tel. 061 260 23 37
    ► E-mail

    mg 8598

    Dorina Waldmeyer

    Program Officer South Sudan
    Tel: +41 (0)61 260 22 58
    ► E-mail

    Hope thanks to your support

    Mission 21
    Protestant Mission Basel

    PO Box 270
    Missionsstrasse 21
    4009 Basel, Switzerland
    Tel.: +41 (0)61 260 21 20

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    Savings Bank Lörrach-Rheinfelden
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    IBAN: DE39 6835 0048 0001 0323 33
    Account No. : 1032333

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