BACKGROUND ON EDUCATION IN NORTHERN UGANDA
Northern Uganda’s education system hasn’t always been so terrible. Before the war, five of Uganda’s top schools were located in the north, but now there is not a school within the top 100. Uganda later introduced the Millennium Goal of Universal Primary Education and many organizations began to focus their efforts on primary schools, and as a result the secondary schools lost attention making it harder to find higher education. Invisible Children recognized this gap and was determined to help rebuild the former top government-registered secondary schools across the districts of Gulu, Amuru, Nwoya, and Pader in northern Uganda. UGANDA TODAY
Since Invisible Children was filmed in 2003, night commuting has ended for the children of northern Uganda. In recent years peace was seemingly within reach. This was attributed to peace talks between the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) and the Government of Uganda, supported by the United States and other nations, allowed for the longest period of peace in northern Uganda’s 23-year war. In the last two years, an estimated 900,000 of the 1.8 million displaced have returned to their homes. This ray of sunshine is quickly dulled byt the fact that one million people are still currently living in the Internally Displaced Persons (IDP) camps. While most desire to return home, the problems surrounding their return are complex. Some have been gone for more than a decade, and their lives will not be that same as they once were. Access to clean water, economic opportunities, health centers, and education are a pressing concern for all. Invisible Children has many programs they use to spread the wealth of education across Uganda. These programs include the Schools for Schools program, the Legacy Scholarship program, and the Teacher Exchange program. These programs combined with other efforts make secondary education more available by providing scholarships, jobs, and international ideas.