The Adolescent Girls’ Education in Crisis Initiative (AGENCI) is a four-year (2019-2023), $17.1 million project to enhance the empowerment of adolescent girls and female youth pursuing educational pathways in crisis-affected areas of South Sudan, Syria, and Uganda. It targets over 148,000 adolescent girls and female youth aged 10-24. It is a joint initiative of World University Service of Canada (WUSC) and Aga Khan Foundation Canada (AKFC), with financial support from Global Affairs Canada (GAC). WUSC is one of Canada’s leading non-profit international development organizations committed to building a more equitable and sustainable world. The organization works with a unique and powerful network of post-secondary institutions, private sector partners and volunteers to provide educational, employment and empowerment opportunities that improve the lives of millions of disadvantaged youth around the world. WUSC has opened a project office in Juba for this project, and has a newly-opened country program office in Kampala.
AKFC, leveraging resources from the wider Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN), promotes development in Africa and Asia, tackling the root causes of poverty through a holistic and interconnected set of programs. These initiatives address people’s most pressing needs and enable them to unlock their full potential, with a particular focus on marginalized groups like women and girls. AKFC has a country office in Kampala and a presence in Syria. WUSC and AKFC have entered into a consortium for the implementation AGENCI, and WUSC is the project lead. Aligned with a consortium agreement, WUSC will solely implement the project in South Sudan and AKF will solely implement in Syria. For project activities in Uganda, WUSC and AKFC implement jointly.
- Background of the AGENCI Project
AGENCI is designed to address gender, social, cultural and economic barriers it’s targeted beneficiaries face in
accessing education, and making life decisions. Rapid gender analyses were conducted in the three countries of
study in 2020 to develop the AGENCI Gender Equality and Social Inclusion Strategy and Project Implementation
Plan. The rapid gender analysis reports will serve as key documents to inform the design of the baseline study. The
project seeks to improve equitable learning outcomes for adolescent girls and female youth in formal and
non-formal upper primary school, secondary school, and in skills training programs. AGENCI responds to specific
barriers and educational needs identified by adolescent girls, female youth, community members, and education
stakeholders through gender analyses conducted in the three countries. AGENCI addresses the root causes of inequality by challenging and helping to transform structural barriers and entrenched social norms, attitudes, and power relations that impact girls’ ability to access and benefit from education. The project’s expected outputs, and immediate, intermediate, and ultimate outcomes are presented in a Logic Model which is annexed to this Terms of Reference. AGENCI will implement a range of innovative and tested interventions including media campaigns, community outreach, girls’ and boys’ clubs, flexible response funds, and girls’ mentorship programs. Working with education stakeholders, AGENCI will provide training and support to ensure that teachers and educational leaders have the skills, resources, data and information they need to provide girls with safe, quality, gender responsive and inclusive learning environments. The project addresses two critical moments in girls’ education when they are most at-risk of dropping out of the education system: adolescence (primary to secondary) and transition to adulthood (secondary to vocational training or employment). The specific interventions employed by WUSC and AKFC in South Sudan, Uganda, and Syria are based on the needs, priorities and realities of each context.
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