About

Mission

TRECC strives to improve the living conditions of all children and youth in Ivory Coast through quality education. Our goal is to enable children and youth to lead healthy and fulfilling lives, respond to local and global challenges, pursue their dreams,and reach their full potential.
We do this by developing and scaling up quality education initiatives in three thematic areas:

  • Quality parenting and early childhood development programs
  • Effective approaches to enhancing literacy and numeracy skills
  • Relevant technical and vocational education and training opportunities for rural youth

Approach

TRECC firmly believes in the power of public-private partnerships to transform education. Our activities strengthen the links among public policy, corporate strategies, civil society aspirations, and scientific evidence.

TRECC nurtures and fosters an ecosystem of stakeholders that converge around the common goal of enhancing the quality of education in Ivory Coast.

We work to strengthen the education system with a particular focus on creating sustainable change. TRECC is a seven-year program running from 2015 to 2022. By proposing our multi-stakeholder approach in combination with effective and affordable solutions that meet our stakeholders’ goals, we are seeking to ensure that Ivorians have access to quality education after the program has come to an end.

Themes

The period of early childhood (up to age 8) is the time when children experience the most rapid brain development. Early environments, emotional experiences, and interactions with parents and primary caregivers are crucial determinants of the development of a child’s brain architecture; approximately 80% of brain development takes place during this period. Scientific evidence indicates that caring, supporting, and stimulating environments greatly increase children’s chances of a successful transition to school, as well as their chances of success in learning, employment, and health outcomes later in life.

In Ivory Coast, there is growing interest in early childhood development and in supporting children’s readiness for school by providing pre-primary education. This is evident in slow but steady increases in pre-primary enrollment, public investment, and government commitment. However, overall access to services, especially integrated services that leverage health, nutrition, education, and social protection initiatives, remains extremely low. Those services that are available in Ivory Coast are usually of poor quality and fail to prepare children for school, and effective coordination mechanisms are lacking.

TRECC helps to promote early childhood development in Ivory Coast by:

  • Supporting the efforts of the Ivorian government to define sound policies and identify strategic indicators to address the challenges and gaps in the field
  • Mobilizing resources and expertise to scale up early childhood development and parenting programs nationwide, using existing public, private, and NGO delivery platforms
  • Strengthening capabilities and contributing to evidence-based knowledge of early childhood development

Many countries, including Ivory Coast, have experienced a remarkable expansion of access to primary education since 2000. However, it is widely recognized that providing access to education will not, in itself, guarantee that all children will learn valuable skills through school attendance. Shifting attention to ensuring equitable access to free, high-quality education pushes governments to look beyond enrollment data and support high-quality interventions that will enable all children to learn.

Ivory Coast has made significant progress in expanding access to primary education, and ambitious new government policies show a strong commitment to ensuring that all children are able to enroll in and complete primary school. However, learning levels remain low. Further investments or additional efficiencies will be necessary to consolidate progress in achieving high-quality education. Challenges still abound, including reaching out-of-school and marginalized populations; effectively recruiting, training, and/or retaining teachers; and improving teaching methods, curricula, quality, and learning outcomes.

TRECC contributes to the development of literacy and numeracy in Ivory Coast by:

  • Supporting the efforts of the Ivorian government to define and achieve SMART quality education targets
  • Piloting evidence-based numeracy and literacy interventions in cocoa communities with the objective of implementing them nationwide
  • Supporting market-based innovations using technology to enhance education

The most practical avenue for developing readily employable and income-generating skills, which will enable individuals around the globe to escape poverty, is through technical and vocational education and training. Life skills, combined with practical knowledge, are recognized as a key resource for enhancing the positive and productive development of young people.

The government of Ivory Coast is beginning to focus attention on the large numbers of out-of-school and working-age youth, aiming to fill the skills gap – the missing set of skills that are needed to overcome the mismatch between training and the labor market and allow young people to get a decent job. Despite some progress, and despite spending approximately 6.7% of the education budget on this area, the challenges far exceed what has so far been achieved. A lack of TVET opportunities, especially those adapted to the needs of the rural labor market, and the prominent role of private providers compound the challenges facing efforts to offer suitable and equitable training for those who need it.

TRECC supports the development of the technical and vocational training sector by:

  • Partnering with the cocoa and chocolate industry to develop high-quality TVET opportunities for rural youth, both within and beyond the supply chain
  • Supporting agricultural entrepreneurship, life skills, and literacy and numeracy programs for rural youth
  • Facilitating an exchange of best practices in the field of TVET between government and private-sector stakeholders in Ivory Coast as well as with practitioners from around the world

Funding partners

TRECC was launched in 2015 by the Jacobs Foundation, which serves as a managing partner and remains its primary source of funding.

The Bernard Van Leer Foundation and UBS Optimus Foundation joined TRECC as technical and financial partners in 2016. Since then, they have committed significant financial and intellectual-capital resources to support the ECD component of TRECC.

For the past 29 years, the Jacobs Foundation has promoted innovation in child and youth development, combining scientific insights with impactful interventions. Established in 1989 by Klaus J. Jacobs and his family with the mission of improving the living conditions of children and youth, the Jacobs Foundation is today one of the world’s leading global foundations dedicated to innovations in the field of child and youth development.

The Bernard van Leer Foundation, which began in the 1960s to focus on the needs of young children, has worked in more than 50 countries to improve opportunities for those growing up in circumstances of social and economic disadvantage.

The UBS Optimus Foundation works to create a world where all children are able to reach their full potential. Its mission is to ensure that children are safe, healthy, educated – and ready for their future.

Team

Sabina Vigani
TRECC
Country director for Ivory Coast
Haleinta Traoré
TRECC
Education and Early Childhood Development specialist
Lise Birikundavyi
TRECC
Impact Finance Investment Manager
Catherine Okou
TRECC
Field officer
Nourgo Koné
TRECC
Field officer
Arsène Ehouman
TRECC
Financial Officer
Audrey Pessot
TRECC
Compliance Officer/Impact Finance Associate
Clara Sanchiz
TRECC
Communications officer
Brigitte Yankey
TRECC
Program assistant

The TRECC program is managed by the Jacobs Foundation and governed jointly by the Jacobs Foundation, the Bernard van Leer Foundation, and the UBS Optimus Foundation.

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