Our innovation lies in our model; youth-driven, low-cost and high impact programming which achieves results in contexts where such achievements are seldom attained.
The pedagogical approach to learning ensures our volunteers (many of whom were previous learners, who have transformed from beneficiaries into benefactors) are able to deliver an effective tutoring programme.
Our volunteers work in small groups. Our learners drive the agenda by bringing the work they are struggling with to the tutoring sessions. The volunteers then facilitate peer-to-peer learning between the group; building learners’ problem solving skills and helping them learn how to learn. The small groups enable vital individual attention, and fast feedback. It is through this learner-centric approach that the learners are able to fill the gaps in their knowledge, and strengthen their grasp on fundamental conceptual basics.
The relationships between the tutor, the learner, the branch, parents, the school, and the wider community is paramount and reinforces our learners’ commitment to the programme.
Each branch is run by a branch committee, which comprises the two full-time staff members, and the most committed learners, volunteers and parents. The democratic decision making and transparency which these committees strive to achieve build ownership of the branch and the programme, and build leadership experience and skills for all involved.
The power of peer pressure promotes learning, increases learners’ locus of control, and ensures a focus on the future. Every learner is supported in applying for a place at a tertiary institution, an internship, or a job.
This model, which was designed collaboratively by a young group of volunteers and learners during the first few years of our operations, continues to be improved upon and applied in different environments and contexts. This iterative and agile approach to programme design and implementation ensures that we are constantly integrating the lessons learned to improve.