Strengthening access to early childhood education in Mbour, Thiès region, Senegal

State: Completed | Number of beneficiaries: 655 children and their families

Duration: 2016

Place: Mbour, region of Thiès, Senegal

Local partner

the ANEF, Senegalese Association Natangué for Children and Women was created in 2012, with the aim of providing economic and social support to poor families by contributing to the improvement of access to education, training and emancipation of women and people in precarious situations.

The problem

The city of Mbour has more than 400,000 inhabitants. The city is facing a very significant rural exodus from the regions of Thies, Fatick and Kaolack, for more than fifteen years. The two key sectors of local development, fisheries and tourism, are facing great difficulties. The high unemployment rate in Mbour is representative of this evolution. In this context, the education of young people and adults is essential. Many children, beyond the normal age of primary school enrollment, are lagging behind. In addition, the primary completion rate is unsatisfactory, although it improved from 49.7% in 2006 to 65.9% in 2013: over a third of all children school does not complete the primary cycle. The net primary school enrollment rate at the national level increased from 54.6% in 2005 to 59.6% in 2011. At the level of the budget distribution, expenditure for the primary cycle is lower than for the secondary cycle, with an allocation of 45.5%, share below the FTI (Fast-Track Initiative) benchmark of 50%. The primary cycle is therefore much less sustained than the secondary cycle. In Senegal, the elementary school has 6 levels: CI, CP, CE1, CE2, CM1 and CM2. At the level of the Mbour area (Mbour, Saly, Ngaparou, Nguekokh, Popenguine, Malicounda and Diass communes) there are 39 institutions for pre-school education, including 10 public structures, and 59 elementary schools, of which 48 public structures. In view of the number of inhabitants and the strong demographic growth in the commune of Mbour, there are very few public institutions. The lack of school infrastructures is a factor of under-schooling and of school wastage, with as corollary the illiteracy. Insufficient didactic materials, unmet schooling demand, and multiple dropouts tend to limit progress in education. These problems jeopardize the future of young people and hinder the socio-economic development of the country. In most elementary schools and colleges, students can take classes only 5 half days a week due to lack of classrooms available. In Mbour, existing schools do not have enough buildings.

Objectives / Activities

The aim of the project is to enable the Municipal Kindergarten School “Coumba Dinding Sonko” and the “Mbour Sérère Kao” Elementary School to host a larger staff under favorable teaching conditions.

Activities carried out:

  • Construction of a small section classroom
  • Renovation of a small section classroom
  • Building an introductory classroom
  • Construction of 5 toilets with tiling


  • Direct beneficiaries: the pupils of the “Coumba Dinding Sonko” kindergarten and the pupils of the “Mbour Sérère Kao” elementary school. In total, 655 children are in school and use toilets. Teachers in the 3 targeted classes (two small classes and one IC class) will benefit directly from the project.
  • Indirect beneficiaries: the families of the pupils concerned as well as the teachers of the “Coumba Dinding Sonko” kindergarten and the “Mbour Sérère Kao” primary school. Parents will provide their children with quality education that is almost free. The community is also a beneficiary thanks to the positive spinoffs of preschool education by allowing children to better adapt to the language of learning, French, from the introductory class to the elementary cycle.