Somali Youth Volunteers for Development Association (SOYVDA) with the support from Save the Children Somalia under “Bar Ama Baro” project has organized “The Commemoration of the Somali Youth Day; 15 May 2021” at Jowhara Hotel, in Mogadishu – Somalia.
During the commemoration of the Somali youth day, Representatives from different youth organizations, officials from save the children, ministry of education, and directorate of education from Benadir regional administration, university students and other key stakeholders participated the event.
The commencement of the event has been facilitated by Mr. Ali Farah who welcomed the participants and introduced the significance of conducting such an important event and then the ceremony was started with the recitation of verses from the Holy Quran by Dr. Mascud.
Then the moderator welcomed Safe the Children, Somalia representative that is Mr. Ibrahim Hassan roble who is the Education program manager. He discussed with the participants the significance of organizing such event and how timely and crucial it’s. He also emphasized the Bar Ama Baro project which aims providing free education access to the youth. He also stated and emphasized the project’s aim which is to give access and opportunity to the youth.
He concluded by saying that “The only solution for the ongoing problems in Somalia is to provide education to the youngsters, so we can have a sustainable future”,
Then followed by Ayan Abdirahman (a representative from Ugaaso organization) which is a female led youth organization. She speak briefly why this day is so crucial to the all youth across Somalia. Further, she mentioned that celebrating such this day is mandatory.
Shortly, the microphone was handed over to Mr Mohamed Ali Siad who is the chairperson of another youth led organization called “Daryel Bulsho”. Continuing his speech, Mr. Mohamed talked about the role youth can play when it comes to promoting and enhancing access to education and more specifically, empowering and educating women and girls.
Then, the facilitator welcomed the panel discussion team which was consisting of Mohamed Okash as the led moderator, Mr. Shafici Ibrahim, Abdifitah Ahmed, Marian Dini and Mr Abdinasir Shacab as a panelists to discuss a panel discussion entitled “Building Inclusive and Equitable Education to Somali Children”. The session was moderated by Okash and started with a short background about the current situation of our educational system in Somalia. He then welcomed to the microphone to Marian Dini who is the (founder of Educate them) and asked How is the current primary education system in Somalia?
Responding to the question, Marian said “There is an alarming number of illiteracy in the country”. Continuing her speech, she also highlighted that there is a great disparity in education. She mentioned that access to a quality education varies from one region to another across the whole country. Furthermore, Marian emphasized that there is a limited distribution towards educational access.
Abdinasir Shacab who is also a youth activist and advocate for education added that security and Instability are great factors in access to education variation from one district to another. Moreover, He explained the role that youth can play in improving access to education.
Then Followed by Mr. Abdifitah Ahmed who is a senior lecturer and Head of the department of infectious disease at Somali National University, Has similarly told the audience that lack of Continuity and coordination are the greatest challenges of implementing successful education projects in Somalia. Furthermore, “We need to have educational institutions who have public objectivities and can produce youth graduate who can solve the 21st century” said by Mr. Abdifitah.
During the final minutes of the panel discussion, Mr. Shafici Ibrahim who is a lecturer and Director of PR at Mogadishu university stated the potential role that universities and other educational institution can play to bridge this gap and provide high quality and accessible education to those who cannot afford it. When asked what are the qualities that we are expecting from the youth graduate? Mr. Shafici replied by saying that “The graduate should now his/her native language first. Secondly he/she should have a critical thinking skills that will allow them to participate the job market’.
Then the panel was concluded by Mr Mohamed Okash and thanks all the panelist for their valuable contributions. He also thanked the audience for their active participation throughout the panel session. He also said in great voice that such discussions should be increased and organized regularly, so we can discuss all the pressing issues related to the current education system in Somalia.
Eventually, the event was concluded by Mr. Abdiaziz who is the Director of TVET and Non-Formal Education program at the Ministry of Education. Mr. Abdiaziz has indicated and reminded the audience about the importance of commemorating such day. He also put a lot of emphasis about the current efforts they are investing in improving the educational access across the whole nation. He finally thanked the whole participants and organizers and he officially closed the event.