An evaluation of the Neganega literacy programme in Mazabuka District of Southern Province of Zambia
Mkandaŵile, Sitwe Benson
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This study was an evaluation of the Neganega adult literacy programme in Mazabuka district of the Southern Province of Zambia. The study assessed whether or not the aims and objectives of the Neganega literacy programme were being fulfilled as the gap or new knowledge which the study sought to establish. The study employed the CIPP Model of evaluation according to Stufflebeam (1971) with particular emphasis on context, input, process and product evaluations. This Model looked at the processes and strategies used in fulfilling the aims and goals of the programme such as the methods used for teaching and learning, nature of teaching materials, type of learners involved including the suitability of Facilitators. It also looked at variables to do with what has been achieved at the end of the programme and what literacy skills the learners acquired, displayed and how they applied them in their daily lives to uplift themselves. The research design used was qualitative as data was collected through face to face interviews, focus group discussion and observation method. The study subjects involved programme participants such as administrators, facilitators, graduates, students and some members of the community. The sample size of fifty one subjects was drawn from the population. Ten of these were graduates of the Neganega literacy programme, ten were students still on the programme, eight were facilitators, nine were administrators and fourteen were community members for triangulation data collection purposes. The justification for having a sample size of fifty one is that firstly, during interviews with the study subjects, a good number of respondents were giving the same answers to a number of research questions. Secondly, the target population or the nature of the programme under study does not have a lot of people deeply involved in the programme and lastly, the time data was being collected was a critical period as the subjects of the study were busy with their daily routine works like farming and looking for different basic needs making themselves very hard to access. The findings of the study revealed that the Neganega literacy programme, though facing a number of challenges was meeting its aims, goals and objectives. The programme was teaching different literacy and life skills such as income-generation and critical thinking skills with a spirit of self-sustainability.The programme also conscientize learners and the community on various issues affecting their lives and suggest means of addressing those issues. The findings also revealed that the programme was performing well because of a number of factors; firstly, the aims and objectives of the programme were relevant to peoples’ lives as they were addressing the needs and aspirations of the community. Secondly, the benefits of the programme were immediately visible within the community and lastly, the inception, development and implementation of the programme involved all the stakeholders in the community. The study recommended that such programmes needed to be supported and promoted by the government, non-governmental organizations and private individuals as they aid development in a country. Secondly, there is also need to formulate and develop a literacy policy document by government of the Republic of Zambia to guide all literacy providers in the country. The study also recommends that Programme managers should provide conducive learning environments, equipment and facilities with all basic needs such as proper classes, toilets, main library, desks, pens and writing pads with respect to the skills under consideration taught.