The National Bank of Kenya (NBK) in conjunction with Kenya Private Schools Association (KPSA) has launched a Sh2 billion education enablement program, dubbed ‘ElimuKonnect’ towards the support of education ecosystems within both primary and secondary schools.
ElimuKonnect targets to upskill infrastructure development, leadership capacity building, innovation in learning, Energy and Water provision, Digitization and Information Communication Technology (ICT) Infrastructure as well as Asset Financing for schools.
In his remarks during the launch at a Nairobi Hotel, State Department for Early Learning and Basic Education Principal Secretary Dr Julius Jwan thanked NBK for charting a path which is extremely credible to the country.
He assured all stakeholders of the government’s support and urged NBK to engage with the Kenya Secondary School Heads Association (KESSHA) and the KPSA team so that they can start appreciating the initiative.
Also speaking during the launch, NBK Managing Director Peter Kioko noted that the bank is aware of the challenges experienced in the education sector and the need to create a tailored programme that contributes to Sustainable Development Goal 4 by ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all in Kenya and worldwide.
“The NBK ElimuKonnect programme seeks to address the challenges in the enablement of the education sector in Kenya with a view to capacity building, financial enablement, technology improvement, innovation and excellence in learning and through this and other partnership under the ElimuKonnect proposition, we are looking forward to supporting the education ecosystem as a financial partner,” said Kioko.
He added that they are keen to work together with all education stakeholders in identifying solutions and partners to facilitate investments in the identified key areas through affordable financing, technical assistance and capacity building to schools.
At the same time Kenya Private Schools Association (KPSA) Chairperson Charles Ochome highlighted that they have had tough negotiations due to the high changes in the interest rates and that ElimuKonnect will help in bringing clean energy, water and sanitation as well as solar in their schools.
“It is great to find a Bank, that understands the challenges that schools face in a bid to facilitate learning and through the partnership, we are happy to have a financial partner that is focused on supporting the education system in ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and we will work together with NBK and other like-minded partners such as Kodris Africa towards affordable financing, technical assistance, technology in schools and capacity building for our member institutions,” said Ochome.
Meanwhile, UNIFIED Alternative Providers for Basic Education and Training (APBET) Schools Association-Kenya Chairman, Moses Wakono, stated that registration timelines into the programme are made easier for APBET schools and with the support of NBK they will fast track registration going forward.
Wakono also requested more partners to join them through NBK adding that ElimuKonnect will support all in the Ministry of Education.
By Hellen Mwangi and Edna Okoth