Many children in Namibia do not get a place in school. The percentage of 15 – 24 years-olds who are neither in school nor training or employment is 33.4 % (as of 2019). This is also a common occurrence in primary education. In early 2021 for example, Namibian newspapers reported that more than 30,000 children did not return to school after the Covid-19-related lockdown. There are many reasons why children don’t go to school

In our experience, the most common reasons are:

  • no capacity in public schools
  • guardians missing admission deadlines
  • supervision of younger siblings
  • Pregnancies

In all cases, the children have no choice but to wait at least one year until the start of the next term. Without a regular daily routine, they can easily come into contact with drugs and crime. At ODEC they receive lessons in basic skills such as reading, writing and arithmetic from a qualified teacher. Small workshops on handicrafts and gardening will also be offered.