AUCD Professional Fellows Alum in Tanzania Wins UN Global Inclusive Education Award

September 7, 2020

Professional Fellows alumnus Goodluck
Professional Fellows alumnus Goodluck

AUCD is proud to announce that Professional Fellows alumnus Goodluck Chanyika has been selected as the winner of the UNESCO One Big Idea Contest on Inclusion and Education. The contest, which is sponsored by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), sought ideas on how to achieve inclusion in education by 2030, and Goodluck's submission was chosen as the best of all applicants throughout the world. Goodluck, who hails from Tanzania, took part in AUCD's Professional Fellows Program, an international exchange that enabled him to study inclusive education at the University of South Dakota Center on Disabilities (South Dakota UCEDD) in 2017 and form a partnership with his mentors there.

Goodluck's award-winning idea calls on Tanzania to make individuals with disabilities leaders in training teachers, creating guidance, and monitoring and evaluating the quality of inclusive education that children with disabilities receive. His idea reflects his strong belief that "nothing about us without us" in education means including individuals with disabilities not only in the classroom, but also in the process of designing and delivering inclusive education itself. Goodluck wants every ward in Tanzania to create inclusive committees whose members with disabilities will be included fully in oversight, trainings and quality improvement of inclusive education in every community. Although Tanzania has ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD), which officially recognizes the right to inclusive education, a 2015 study found that less than 5% of children with disabilities were enrolled in school. Goodluck's idea to make individuals with disabilities leaders in monitoring and evaluating education quality would move things forward since teachers, policymakers and public officials would all learn directly from their unique knowledge, expertise and diverse lived experience.

Goodluck has a long record of developing innovative ideas for training teachers in Africa on inclusive education. He leads the Jumuisha Tanzania Initiative, an NGO that provides an online library and learning network with inclusive education resources and trainings for teachers throughout Tanzania. Goodluck created Jumuisha (which means ""to include" in Swahili) after observing resource-sharing networks and disability models at the South Dakota UCEDD during his Fellowship facilitated by AUCD in 2017. He set up the framework that led to Jumuisha with support and guidance from Dr. Wendy Parent-Johnson, former executive director of the South Dakota UCEDD and current executive director of the Arizona UCEDD. Dr. Parent-Johnson worked with Goodluck in Tanzania in 2018 and Goodluck has since received awards for creating Jumuisha from the African Union and the African Disability Rights Conference.

Goodluck is one of more than 60 young African leaders to take part in AUCD's Professional Fellows Program, which was formerly called the ADA International Fellowship Program, but has since been rebranded as the Professional Fellows Program on Inclusive Disability Employment (PFP-IDE). It is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and co-administered with ICI-UMass Boston.

Read more about Goodluck's award-winning idea and Jumuisha's ground-breaking work on the UNESCO World Education Blog:

Listen to Goodluck discuss his idea on the UNESCO podcast: