The problems caused by 30 years of civil war have been compounded by a series of severe droughts and subsequent famines, leaving Somalia one of the poorest countries in the world.

Since the collapse of the education system, communities have taken different approaches to establishing locally run education services. While any progress is impressive, all these systems face enormous challenges. In many areas across the country, parents are not able to fund their children’s education. In addition to poverty, long distances to school, safety concerns, social norms favoring boys’ education, a lack of trained teachers  and the low availability of sanitation facilities stops parents from enrolling children, particularly girls, in school.



People have been internally displaced


Somalis require humanitarian aid. This is close to half of the population

3M +

Children are out of school

what we are doing

Africa Education Trust (AET), part of Street Child, started working in Somalia in 1996, at a time when many organizations were leaving the country after the aborted UN Peacekeeping mission. By working through local staff and organizations we have been able to continue operating throughout the country despite successive cycles of drought, famine, and conflict.

Street Child programs support government and community efforts to re-establish formal education at both primary and secondary school levels. Our work establishing elementary and high school examination systems is restoring communities’ confidence in the education system. We have also partnered with universities to support the training of teachers and managers to help rebuild the school system.

In all our work, we focus on excluded groups including pastoralists and people in remote rural communities, families displaced by conflict or drought, ethnic minorities, people living with disabilities and girls and women.

Drought Emergency and Resilience Project

This program supports efforts by the international community to reduce the high rates of illness and death caused by the extreme drought, lack of clean water and the exploitation of children in the Togdheer region of Somaliland. We are providing three elementary schools with water and food and supporting 441 elementary school children to remain in school. In addition, 3,450 households are also benefitting from child protection services through the establishment, training, and engagement of village-based child protection committees.

Supporting displaced populations

In Jubaland Street Child is working with ten schools in communities where there are high numbers of returnees or displaced populations. This program, supported by Education Cannot Wait, provides teacher training and cash grants for school improvements, such as accessibility for children with disabilities. We’re also delivering scholarships to more than 750 children in poverty, 21,000 sanitary kits to girls, and 4,000 solar lamps to enable home study. Street Child is working in partnership with communities to improve learning outcomes in these emergency situations.

Vocational Education and Training

Funded by the European Union, this program provides more than 450 out-of-school youth with the life skills they need to find formal employment or create their own small business. The program links participants with apprenticeships and micro-loans to promote independence and micro-economic development, working with merging trades to provide a workforce for Somalia’s future.

Rural Women Education and Empowerment Project

This project provides basic literacy and numeracy skills, alongside reproductive health, maternal health and childcare information to 300 out-of-school young women and girls (aged 14-30 years) in Somaliland. It is being implemented in five regions of Somaliland that are inhabited by rural, pastoralist communities which have some of the highest out-of-school populations and lowest female literacy rates in the world. The project targets women and girls who missed out on education earlier in life and lack any form of literacy and numeracy skills.


IMPACT in somalia


Children reached with direct enrolment or school access support


Adults reached, including teachers supported into college to strengthen their qualifications


Classrooms across eight schools reached with renovation or construction