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Community service is an overarching and major facet of student education and experience at the Academies. Incorporated into student life and the curriculum, community service extends the educational experience beyond the classroom, informing students of the real-world implications of their studies. Through community projects with local organisations and groups, students gain a sense of the interconnectedness of their education with the world around them.
Students can participate in a variety of structured community initiatives and internships to learn about their place in the world.
By partnering with local Aga Khan Development Network agencies, students learn first-hand about the operations of an organisation and work towards making tangible contributions to the agencies.
In addition, community engagement provides an understanding of broad concepts such as human rights, dignity and autonomy, while emphasising the ethos of leaving the world a better place.
Examples of service projects from the Aga Khan Academy Mombasa:
Coast Rural Support Programme: Tree planting at Mtaa community reservoir. The reservoir was created as a community project. The outreach project involved planting 700 indigenous seedlings around the reservoir.
East African Quality in Early Learning: Creation of the Fun Reading Day initiative to promote early grade reading. Inspired by the common 1:10 ratio of students to books in local public primary schools, the first project was to collect books to establish a library at Ng’ombeni Primary School. Through a book drive and other community projects, students collected books and catalogued and prepared them for library use.
Our Junior School and Diploma Programme (DP) students visited the Ng’ombeni Primary School for group reading sessions. This project was then handed over to upcoming DP students to continue.
Education for Marginalised Children in Kenya (EMACK): Student’s council training workshop at Longo Primary School. Sarrah Sheikh came to know the Longo Primary School through her summer placement service. She went on to assist EMACK in establishing student leadership bodies, beginning with Longo Primary School. Topics covered went from effective leadership to communication tools, and the difference between prefects and elected student leaders. Three weeks after this project, the Kenyan government announced the phasing out of the prefect system and the introduction of elected student councils.
Madrasa Resource Centre: School painting project at Mpirani Nursery School. After visiting a school in disrepair, the DP students decided that a bright place was needed for the students to learn. They mobilised their fellow students to create bright learning materials and to repaint the school.