On 8th December 2017, during a colorful ceremony at Kampala Kolping Hotel, Refugee Law Project (RLP) passed out a total of 135 forced migrants who had successfully concluded the English for Adults (EFA) and RESPECT University courses this year, 114 and 21 respectively.
This was the 7th EFA certificate award ceremony, but most importantly it also marked 10 years of the RLP EFA programme's existence, a period in which over 6,000 refugees and asylum seekers have acquired English reading and speaking skills.
RLP introduced the EFA Course in Kampala in 2007 to enable refugees to effectively communicate and advocate for their rights, as well as integrate easily into the host community. In 2016, with funding support from the Democratic Governance Facility, this course was extended to Nakivale and Kyangwali refugee settlements. Effective January 2018, with funding from the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, new learning centers in will be opened in Lamwo, Adjumani and Kiryandongo districts.
This course is based on the "Speak Your Rights" curriculum designed to help forced migrants from non-English speaking countries learn how to read, write, count, listen to and speak English, and is delivered at five levels; Literacy, Level 1, Level 2, Level 3 and Level 4.
The RESPECT University is a division of RESPECT International, a non-governmental organization based in Canada which provides distance learning programs for post-secondary education to refugee students. RESPECT University offers 8 courses but for the past year, the students passed out offered Business Administration and Office Management.
Over the years, RLP has noted that EFA has helped to ensure that forced migrants understand the systems, laws and the culture they are living in, access legal and other services, build their capacity and practice their professions and easily integrate as they contribute to national development. RLP itself has benefited as a number of EFA graduates have since joined our staff. Completion of EFA also opens up opportunities for graduates to join our successful Video Advocacy Course.
We are committed to continue offering these two programmes to benefit many more forced migrants in the years to come.