The official launch of the construction work of the Colleges of Proximity of the Youwasso Basin took place on Friday, March 25, 2022. The ceremony that took place in the framework of the football field of Youwasso, took place in the presence of many personalities including the Minister of National Education and Literacy, the Director Country Resident of the MCC and the Director General of MCA-Ivory Coast.
Also present were the Minister Governor of the Autonomous District of Bas-Sassandra, the Prefect of the Region, the Prefect of the Department of Tabou, the mayors of Grand Béréby and San Pedro, as well as the heads of communities and schools. The ceremony began with the libation of the spokesman of the community of Youwasso and surrounding area and the traditional welcome addressed to the authorities who made the trip.
The Director General of MCA Côte d’Ivoire, Rajan Florence, after thanking the political, administrative and traditional authorities as well as the people present, gave details of the college that will be built in Youwasso. The facility will house 640 children in an R+1 building consisting of 16 classrooms, an Administrative Block, a computer room, a playground, differentiated toilets for girls and boys, two sports fields and a football field. This is the culmination of a process that took time, but was necessary to guarantee the social acceptability of communities, the security of plots, the quality of studies and therefore the sustainability of investments.” she added.
The other two colleges of the Oueoulo and Adjamene basins will be built according to the same plan. On the other hand, for the Mane basin, a college of 8 classrooms will be built with regard to the number of students. She said that it is in total 4 colleges of the respective basins of Youwasso, Adjamené, Oueoulo and Mané that will be built following this ceremony thanks to the funding of the American Government through the MCC. Before the end of this year 2022, it is planned to launch 16 other community colleges in the Gbêkê and San Pedro regions to complete the first phase.
As for Mrs Laura Rudert, Director Country Resident of MCC, after having conveyed greetings and her personal support and that of the American people of the Ambassador of the United States of America, the Honourable Richard Bell, whose agenda did not allow the presence at the ceremony, she stressed that the objective of the US government in Côte d’Ivoire is to support Ivorian efforts to develop a modern, diversified and prosperous economy through a well-educated and healthy population.
According to Laura Rudert, approximately 7,000 students currently enrolled in elementary schools, with 54% of girls expected to benefit from these schools. 22 villages within 5 km of the host villages and 6 villages between 17 and 24 km from the host village of Adjamene will benefit from the nearby colleges. She also emphasized that the achievement of the goals of this American gift “will depend on the value we want to give it, on how it is best used (…). It is not a new building that will give a better future. We need good, well-trained teachers, excellent educational coaches, parents and communities who support their children’s education. We want to ensure that children in this country have the right environment for their education, including support from their parents and safety for little girls.”
She finally reassured the assistance of the commitment of the Government of the United States of America to continue, through the MCC, the support of Cote d’Ivoire towards the success of this program. This ceremony was also the occasion to present 2 vehicles to the Regional Directorate of the Ministry of National Education and Literacy, DRENA.
The Minister of National Education and Literacy, Mariétou Koné, conveyed the message of the Minister, Secretary General of the Presidency of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, also President of the Board of Directors of MCA-Côte d’Ivoire, Mr Abdourahmane Cissé, who entrusted her with translating to the population the importance that the President of the Republic attaches to the training of Ivorian youth. She thanked the United States Ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire, the Country Director of MCC, and the Director General of MCA Côte d’Ivoire for supporting the education and training sector.
As a reminder, the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is an independent and innovative American Foreign Aid Agency whose mission is to fight poverty in the world. It provides effective US foreign aid taking into account good governance, country ownership and results. MCC has provided USD 525 million to Cote d’Ivoire to support improvements in areas such as transportation and basic education. The Millennium Challenge Account Côte d’Ivoire (MCA-Côte d’Ivoire) acts as an independent management body for the implementation of the Côte d’Ivoire Compact Program, a fund whose objective is to generate inclusive economic growth and reduce poverty.