“A transformed and well-resourced education system can be an effective long-term preventative tool that protects, builds and sustains peace before, during and after conflict.”UNESCO
This year’s International Day of Education is focused on “learning for lasting peace”. Around the world, conflict, poverty, child labor, and forced displacement have disrupted the vital education of millions of children, from Ukraine and Gaza, to Colombia and Côte d’Ivoire.
Access to quality education is essential to foster long-lasting peace, in particular, ensuring displaced and refugee children are able to continue learning helps in addressing the intersecting challenges of poverty reduction and conflict resolution.
A digital education solution in times of displacement
In August 2023, UNICEF warned of the deterioration of quality education for Ukrainian children due to the ongoing conflict in the region. Those who are not able to attend school in person have been forced to rely on digital resources to continue their education. War Child Holland, a 2017 Klaus J. Jacobs Best Practice Prize winner, works with the Ukrainian Ministry of Education to champion the remote learning education of children through their program Can’t Wait to Learn. Originally designed in response to the global challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has since been adapted to fill the education gap for children in Ukraine and is supported by the Jacobs Foundation, as well as funding from other partner foundations. We are also supporting the language development of Ukrainian children through the digital platform Stories with Clever Hedgehog, an online, safe space with ebooks and entertainment for Ukrainian children and their families.
Supporting sustainable learning in Colombia
At the United National Global Refugee Forum in December 2023, the Jacobs Foundation pledged to support Colombia’s efforts to increase quality education for refugee and host community children by strengthening evidence-based policy and practice through the Colombia Evidencia Potencial en Educacion multistakeholder initiative. Our Co-CEO Fabio Segura attended the Forum in Switzerland and pledged the 50 million CHF, which has the potential to impact almost 2 million children and support the development of foundational skills, such as numeracy, for some of the most at-risk communities.
Our commitment to quality education for all children
Through our participation in the Geneva Global Hub for Education in Emergencies (EiE), an alliance of organizations and states committed to ensuring children and youth affected by protracted displacement and humanitarian crises have their right to education protected, we continue to reinforce our commitment to improving children’s learning and education, no matter where they live.