On Monday, April 1, 2013, Daraja officially started its first-ever Transition Program. Former Form 4s – who completed their secondary school education at the end of November – began filtering back to Daraja over the weekend, after a four-month break from school. Most students around Kenya who completed their end-of-high-school exams in the fall will be at home until this September, when they may begin college or university. The Daraja girls are having a new and different experience.
For three weeks last November, these 25 girls sat for the KCSE (Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education) exams, a series of grueling tests that could be compared to the SATs in the U.S. but are, in fact, much more intense in that their scores essentially determine a high school student’s future. (For more information, click here.) Then, they headed back to their respective homes across the country, where they returned to their families and waited until the 1st of March when the scores of the exams were finally released.
While other secondary school graduates wait and wonder if they will be accepted to university or receive a scholarship, Daraja girls will be participating in a five-month program that intends to acclimate them to the “real world.” They will learn a diverse set of skills, including:
- Personal Finance — Budgeting, opening checking or M-pesa accounts, understanding and
- Business Skills – Developing a business plan and learning the basics of running a business through a campus enterprise
- Career Exploration and Choice — Exploring potential job potential and career paths
- Community Leadership — How to interact with one’s communities and access community resources