UNICEF report highlights advances in programming for education in emergencies

In 2009, over 6 million children around the globe benefited from interventions to restore learning and improve the quality of education in countries affected by emergencies. As the world marks the International Day for Disaster Reduction today, a report released by UNICEF shows how education programmes in countries affected by conflict or natural disasters – and sometimes both – are overcoming odds and contributing to long-term development.
Enabling children to go to school during and after emergencies is a core part of UNICEF’s mandate. Since 2006, UNICEF has dramatically scaled up work in education in emergencies and post-crisis transition countries through the Back on Track programme.
This $201 million initiative, funded by the Dutch Government, represents the largest single earmarked contribution to UNICEF from a government donor. The European Commission also contributed about $5 million to the programme. This combined support has ensured that children are helped both at the immediate onset of emergencies – when the task is to restore schooling and establish a safe environment for learning – and in the more sustained period of post-crisis reconstruction aimed at building back education systems.
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