Challenges faced by orphans in communities in accessing primary education: a study of Kikandwa village, Kampala District
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With the ever-growing number of orphaned population in Kikandwa village, the available support systems seem not to keep up with the ever increasing number of orphans in one of Kampala’s remote settings. The study was guided by the objectives that aimed at establishing the different challenges faced by the orphans of Kikandwa village in accessing primary education, coping mechanisms employed by these children (orphan and vulnerable) in trying to access basic education, challenges faced by the community in helping orphans of Kikandwa village access primary education. The research employed both qualitative and quantitative approaches. The data collection methods involved face to face interviews in which a standardize structured questionnaire was employed to obtain data from the primary respondents, unstructured interviews were also done to understand the different feelings that surrounds the challenges of accessing basic education, observation, and key informant interviews were employed as well to supplement the findings. The study sample comprised of 60 primary respondents which were selected using purposive sampling technique and 20 household heads who have had or come in contact with an orphans as well as 8 key informants. The study findings revealed that a substantial number of orphans living in Kikandwa village face series of challenges in accessing education service. Amongst the challenges faced by the orphans include poverty, domestic violence, child labor and child abuse. Furthermore, the findings showed that despite the accelerating socio-economic challenges and structural transformation, the extended family remains the strongest and most important unit of care for the orphaned children. The study concluded with recommending the need for increased sensitization of the communities about the importance of orphans’ education and emphasis should also be put on fair and just treatment of the orphans when in and out of school. This can be done through mass media platforms, community dialogues on the rights of orphans and also church leaders since people listen to them in most cases.