Project Universal Education

Safe schools with learning resources and qualified educators where girls are encouraged to attend.

Education is more than just a classroom.

In 2008, Project Universal Education was launched in partnership with with five local communities in Luwero, Uganda and the Ugandan Ministry of Education to ensure that both boys and girls alike have full access to primary schooling.

An essential component of Project Universal Education is the commitment, from both a community and JLMC, to co-invest in all of the program’s education initiatives. Each community served by this program has signed a covenant agreeing to the co-investment required on its part (to gather building materials, make bricks, and create an income-generating activity for its school, for example). The investments made by communities have empowered them to ensure their schools are becoming sustainable, quality learning institutions where happy and qualified educators have the training and resources necessary to keep children engaged, successful, and safe.

Since 2008, this program has built and invested in five school buildings in five communities in central Uganda’s Luwero District. This includes 24 classrooms, one dormitory, 15 teachers houses, five water tanks, 48 toilets, and five lightning rods. Schools have also been equipped with desks, culturally relevant textbooks, and classroom learning materials. Teachers and school administrators have sharpened their skills in annual workshops and students have participated in extracurricular activities that include music, dance, drama, and debate. In addition, all five school communities have participated in JLMC’s Girl Power Project and Project Justice programs.

The year 2015 marked the conclusion of JLMC’s financial commitment to Project Universal Education schools. All five schools began reaching self-sufficiency as a result of the co-investments that have been made in the sustainability of the infrastructure, the health and safety of the students, the quality of education, and developments of the schools. As a result, parents, teachers and community members have mastered the skills to operate and manage their schools without further outside investment. Today, these five communities actively own their schools, direct the quality of education, and manage maintenance costs. As a result of Project Universal Education, nearly 1,500 children a year are attending safe schools equipped with the tools to support quality education. 

What’s in It for Girls:

Project Universal Education has been a tremendous laboratory of sorts for the Girl Power Project. By being able to witness firsthand the dynamics at play for girls in primary school — including issues of safety traveling to school, menstrual hygiene, and vulnerability within the classroom — the Girl Power Project was fine-tuned specifically for the sub-Saharan context. As a result of the trust and deep relationships that JLMC developed with communities through school-building initiatives, the Girl Power Project was successfully launched in 2009 with gratifying results. Today, as the Girl Power Project continues to grow and expand to reach other communities, teachers and community members in Project Universal Education schools provide testimony, advocacy, and training to support girls’ empowerment at home.



*A result of the overall benefit to the community of having a school nearby


Lives directly impacted annually through Project Universal Education schools

816 GIRLS  |  717 BOYS  |  39 TEACHERS