Bantwana Schools Integrated Program (BSIP)

Bantwana Schools Integrated Program (BSIP)

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BSIP serves the Lubombo region of Swaziland, where chronic drought and poverty have contributed to high numbers of vulnerable children.

Since 2008, Bantwana has used schools as entry points to deliver integrated services to more than 18,000 vulnerable youth. These services include health (primary health care screening and referrals, HIV prevention and adolescent reproductive health information); nutrition; livelihoods; education; and psychosocial support. The program was launched in 10 schools with support from a consortium of private donors. The Swazi government, communities, and donors have hailed BSIP as a model program. Due to its success, BSIP attracted additional funding to scale up to 34 schools.

Bantwana equips crucial stakeholders with information about how to address child vulnerability and provide follow-up support. As a result, they become leaders and feel they have ownership over the program, which helps it to expand over time. These stakeholders include teachers, principals, school committee members, community health outreach volunteers, local and traditional leaders, government officials, and youth themselves.

Since 2008, BSIP has established:

  • School-based income generating activities and student-led businesses that generate funds to support education costs for the most vulnerable children.
  • Permaculture gardens in all 34 BSIP secondary schools, as well as in vulnerable households, to improve child and household nutrition and income generation.
  • The School Health Outreach Program (SHOP), which has brought primary health care and counseling services to more than 18,000 students in 37 schools.
  • Education interventions to support schools with scholastic grants to obtain educational materials that improve student learning.
  • Protecting Our Youth clubs in 15 BSIP schools to promote youth leadership and provide youth with adolescent sexual and reproductive health information through Bantwana-trained peer facilitators.
  • Corner libraries in schools to boost students’ reading and writing skills, and encourage teachers to conduct extra learning sessions.