Our Story

Link has over 30 years’ experience strengthening education systems in Africa.

Today, Link is a family of organisations working to transform education for children and communities across impoverished rural areas in:

Working directly with schools, communities and government, we provide support and training for more effective teaching, improved school management, increased community engagement leading to better learner outcomes.

Recognition of our impact

Awarded a special commendation from Ethiopia’s Wolaita Zone in recognition of our girls’ education work Shortlisted and received an honourable mention from the HundrED in 2021 Awarded a prize in 2021 from the SNNPR Regional Education Bureau in special recognition of our work in Ethiopia Our Malawi school improvement work was featured as a case study in IIEP’s “Information and Transparency” publication in 2019 Featured as a case study in UNESCO’s 2017/18 Global Education Monitoring Report School Review in Uganda was featured as a case study in WEF’s “Unleashing Greatness” paper in 2016 Supported the Malawi government to develop the country’s first ever National Education Standards in 2015

From humble beginnings as a student society over three decades ago, Link has improved the life chances of hundreds of thousands of children across sub-Saharan Africa.

Here is our story.

How it started

Link started life in 1989 as Link Africa,  a student-led movement at the University of Cambridge. With roots in the anti-apartheid movement, Link operated in rural areas of South Africa that were most in need of support.

Pioneering work

Over time, Link evolved from school level projects to a “whole district” approach. This meant liaising with schools to help them identify and communicate their requirements, as well as encouraging district engagement with schools to support change.

This pioneering work proved hugely influential in improving district communication and ownership. It set the stage for Link’s increasing focus on working with districts to improve their capacity to support schools through better information provision and more effective planning.

Expanding horizons

Link’s novel whole district approach in South Africa caught the attention of those working to improve education in other countries.

2000 – LCD Uganda was registered and began work on the Masindi District Education Development Project.

2006 – Link’s growing reputation and success saw the organisation expand into Malawi with funding from the Scottish Government.

2007 – Link started work in Ethiopia in 2007, made possible by an Irish Aid grant secured by the recently established Irish branch of Link.

2017 – Rwanda became the most recent addition to the Link family.

Looking to the future

As Link builds experience across its countries of operation we are also collecting a considerable bank of comparative data. Looking to the future, we are exploring ways to use this data to understand the impact of our work comparatively across regions.

We plan to share this learning more widely with ministries of education and local governments to influence policy internationally and improve education around the world.