Somali Family Services (SFS) recognizes that educating Somalis of all ages, clans and income levels is one of the best strategies to bring peace, security and democracy to Somalia. Through education, Somalis find their voice and are able to make positive contributions to the development of their country. By providing educational opportunities and skills trainings to Puntlanders, SFS is not only helping individuals build sustainable livelihoods, but also providing them with essential tools for actively participating in their communities.
SFS aims to target Puntland’s youth in many of its educational programs, recognizing that education and related job opportunities serve as important alternatives to the criminal activities that normally target young people for recruitment, including piracy and extremism. SFS also strives for gender parity in its educational programs as part of its endeavor to empower women and girls, and to combat the disparity in educational attainment and livelihood opportunities experienced between women and men.
Currently, SFS is developing several educational programs, including one to provide educational opportunities for nomadic children and youth. In the past, it has enhanced education for Somalis through various projects:
Skills Training for Young Puntlanders
- Because conflict has deprived many Somali young people from receiving a formal education, many young adults lack the basic skills they need to obtain jobs and provide for themselves. To help address this need, from March to August 2011 SFS provided skills training for almost 200 of Puntland’s young people. Through these trainings, the youth not only gained skills in areas such as accounting, communications and technology, but they received practical training in how to search for jobs successfully. By the close of the training, SFS had placed half of its participants in paid jobs or internships, and had secured commitments from different employers to place another quarter of the trainees. Furthermore, demonstrating their own perseverance, several youth participants started a group called Hope Seekers to mutually support one another in their job searches.
Puntland Library & Resource Center
- SFS established and runs the Puntland Library & Resource Center (PLRC), which has become a hub for students, teachers and community members to meet, acquire information, and exchange knowledge and ideas. Through its partnership with Books for Africa, the PLRC has managed to distribute over 2 million books to schools and libraries throughout Somalia.
SFS fully recognizes that when citizens’ minimum health standards are left unmet, they are less able to actively participate in their communities and state-building efforts. Therefore, SFS has conducted campaigns to raise awareness about healthy lifestyle practices, targeting vulnerable groups such as mothers, children and youth.
Printable Version Documents:
- Education One-Pager
- PLRC 2-Pager
- Marginalized Groups Two-Pager
- CSO and Reconciliation Programs One-Pager
- Adventist Development and Relief Agency
- Books For Africa
- Counterpart International
- Diakonia, Sweden
- Education Development Center
- International Labour Organization
- National Endowment for Democracy
- State of Minnesota Department of Human Services
- UN Political Office for Somalia
- United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
- United Nations Population Fund
- World Movement for Democracy