Location
Democratic Republic of Congo
Project Type
Collaboration, Learning, Sharing and Impact
Our Projects

Rooting ‘Uprooted’

This project will deepen the impact from ‘Uprooted: Co-creating, an educational timeline addressing the violent past’. Having developed digital educational materials addressing the causes of conflict and its devastating consequences in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) (see www.deracine.org), we aim to support an ever greater number of secondary school teachers in and around Bukavu to implement them in their classrooms.

After co-creating the educational timeline ‘Uprooted’, which addresses Eastern Congo’s violent past from multiple perspectives, 20 teachers of history and of Education Civique et Morale (Civic and Moral Education; ECM) from 10 secondary schools in Bukavu tested out the materials to assess their effect on students’ intergroup understanding and empathy. Within EdJAM’s second phase funding call on ‘Collaboration, Learning, Sharing and Impact (CLSI)’, we aim to – somewhat paradoxically – root ‘Uprooted’ in the practices of secondary school teachers in and around Bukavu through (1) the training of more teachers, (2) fostering institutional support and (3) creating a global community of practice.

Objectives:  

Teacher training: By preparing and supporting the teachers who participated in the pilot project to provide teacher training to their peers from other schools, we want to create a ripple effect and foster the use of Uprooted materials across an increasingly larger portion of schools in and around Bukavu. Notwithstanding the effects of outreach campaigns via social media about our materials, many teachers may remain reluctant to use them in the absence of any training. Therefore, we would like to invest in the professional development of teachers, strengthening their motivations and capacities to deal with the violent past in the classroom. To this end, we will organize two-day teacher trainings, complemented by a follow up workshop after they have had the possibility to try out the materials. We deem that the teachers who participated in the pilot project are the best placed to provide these trainings. The role of the project team, hence, is to prepare and coordinate the trainings rather than providing the training itself.

Institutional support:  Teachers have not only been found to be reluctant to teach about the violent past because they are ill-prepared, but also because they are afraid of repercussions on behalf of the school management. That is why the original small grant proposal included a dissemination event to share the impact of the project with policy makers. Beyond this event, and with the support of the CLSI grant, we will further enhance institutional support by organizing a high-level event that brings together school principals and regional education officials. The agenda of this event will include testimonials by teachers and students, a research presentation by the project team, an inspirational presentation by EdJAM partners (Performing Pain: Mnemotechnologies of remembrance in Abia and its impact on informal (music) education, memory, peace and recovery , Abia, Uganda and Unfinished Business: Memory and Counternarratives to the Rainbow Nation, South Africa), and a high-level discussion. Throughout the day, we will invite an artist to make an attractive, visual summary of the insights shared. Apart from the high-level discussion, all presentations will be live streamed allowing EdJAM partners to take part in the event and learn from our experiences.

Global community of practice: To further support learning and impact, we will set up a closed discussion platform on the website of Uprooted where teachers can ask questions and share experiences. This platform will be moderated by the project team. Besides Congolese teachers, teachers from the other EdJAM project countries working on curricular approaches are invited too. To encourage active participation and use of the platform, we will organize 3 online seminars in which EdJAM partners and participating teachers go into dialogue with Congolese teachers. To overcome the language barrier, we will ensure that there is simultaneous translation.

Meet the team:

Democratic Republic of Congo

Justin Sheria Nfundiko

Associate Professor

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Democratic Republic of Congo

Line Kuppens

Post-doctoral researcher

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Democratic Republic of Congo

 Emmanuel Akonkwa Nzizi

Research assistant 

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