In August, the CSC Alumni Team hosted a Development in Action webinar on ‘Supporting refugee students’ education and wellbeing in Uganda’, delivered by Commonwealth Alumnus Zaharah Namanda.

This webinar will address the CSC development theme of Access, inclusion, and opportunity.

The CSC’s Development in Action webinar series aims to highlight the work and research of Commonwealth Alumni across a range of development impact areas.

About the speaker

Zaharah Namanda is the Executive Director of the Utopia Foundation, a charity based in Traverse City, in the US. She supports Utopia’s programmes and work in Uganda, including the Squaring the Education Pyramid Institute (STEPi) which focuses on culturally relevant child-centered literacy.

Zaharah is one of the founders of Africa ELI (Africa Education and Leadership Initiative) in Uganda, an NGO working to empower young refugees and local youths, especially women and girls, through education, leadership, and wellbeing. She has 6 years’ experience working as an advocate and implementer for equitable and inclusive education programmes in underserved communities in Uganda. Zaharah is a former Mandela Washington Fellow and has been awarded prizes for her work, including the International Women Sustainability Award among others.

Zaharah Namanda is a 2020 Commonwealth Shared Scholar from Uganda. She completed an MSc in Education, Public Policy and Equity at the University of Glasgow.

Putting wellbeing at the heart of education

In this webinar, Zaharah discussed how her work with Africa ELI is improving the quality of education for refugee students in Uganda. She highlighted the importance of promoting wellbeing programmes for refugee children, in particular girls, to enable them to thrive and overcome past experiences of trauma such as conflict and forced migration.

During the webinar, Zaharah outlined the function of her Inclusive Diversity Education Model which she developed during your Commonwealth Scholarship to support the promotion of inclusive education. With a particular focus on pedagogy, the model provides a blueprint for educators and students to create open, inclusive learning environments.

This webinar presentation was followed by an interactive Q&A session with Commonwealth Scholars and Alumni. A recording of this webinar is available to view on the CSC’s YouTube channel where you can also watch previous events in the series.

Join future Development in Action webinars

The CSC’s Development in Action webinars take place each month and are open to all Commonwealth Scholars and Alumni.

To find out about upcoming webinars, please visit the CSC’s events webpage.