|Global Co-ordination > Working Group on Education for All >|
|First meeting / Document 16|
The Initiative on Education
right to Education and Emergency Situation
me great pleasure to address you this morning to share with
you UNESCO's position in the field of Education in Situations
of Emergency and Crisis. This is an occasion we dreamed of not
so long ago to be able to gather all partners having the same
objectives and preoccupations for Education in Situations of
Emergency and Crisis, the United Nations Agencies, Donors Agencies
and Non Governmental Organizations. Thank you for been numerous
in answering our common initiative. We are all together facing
the same challenge and we are determined to raise it through
our reinforced cooperation.
situations caused by political instability, armed conflicts,
natural disasters constitute today a structural element of the
worldwide reality. More than a third of the UNESCO Member States
is in this situation notably in Africa, in Asia and in Central
America. The immediate result is the dramatic cortege of millions
of refugees and displaced population having lost everything
and who are in majority, women and children.
witnessing since 1945 an unprecedented explosion of more than
150 conflicts around our five continents making millions of
deaths and injured. During the first worldwide war 5% of victims
were civilians. This number increased today to 80%, 90%, half
of them are children. They are the first victims. But they are
also used in armed conflicts as fighters, which means as child-soldiers.
They are more than 300 000 aged less than 18 years old enrolled
in armed groups. We find them in Afghanistan, Somalia, Uganda,
Congo, Sierra Leone, Colombia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, etc…
elementary rights to security, primary cares and education
are crucial issues. The United Nations Specialised Agencies
in particular as well as NGOs have each a major role to play
in safeguarding these rights.
of protection and basic cares are guaranteed by Organizations
like the UNHCR and UNICEF notably, UNESCO brings as for her
an important contribution in the application of the right to
education in time of war. Education in Situations of Emergency
and Crisis constitutes with health, the type of social services
that guarantees the transition between humanitarian actions
and assistance towards reconstruction and sustainable development.
Any interruption of this process is a direct threat to the right
to Education which are the pillars of the actions stipulated
by the United Nations and specially within UNESCO mandate.
of the International Community
it was stated in Jomtien in 1990, the Dakar Declaration (April
2000) makes reference four times to the Education in Situation
of Emergency and Crisis (points 8, 11, 13 and 14). It is stated
in particular that "to achieve goals, we the governments, organizations,
institutions, groups and associations represented at the World
Education Forum pledge ourselves to meet the needs of education
systems affected by conflict, natural calamities and instability
and conduct educational programmes in ways to promote mutual
understanding, peace and tolerance, and help to prevent violence
It is added
that "countries with less developed strategies - including countries
affected by conflict, countries in transition, and post-crisis
countries - must be given the support they need to achieve more
rapid progress towards education for all".
It is finally
asked to prepare to this purpose a national plan EFA for 2002
at the latest including all components of Education in Situations
of Emergency and Crisis for the countries concerned.
Conference of Winnipeg in September 2000 on children affected
by war has for its part been concerned in the same way. It insisted
strongly that "access to education is rapidly restored, supported
and strengthened during and after conflict. Education must be
funded with the same sense of urgency as life-saving emergency
assistance and must be made a central pillar of humanitarian
It is specified
that "specialised, accelerated learning programmes for adolescents
should form a key part of the emergency education response"
and that "children, especially refugee and displaced children,
should have the option of an education that respects their language,
culture and identity".
of education in all circumstances is a fundamental principle
that guides UNESCO's emergency strategies and programmes which
action in the field remains entirely collaborative and in partnership
with the other Agencies as well as with NGOs operating for the
convinced that a quality education allows children to develop
their critical thinking and problem-solving skills, openness
to others and respect of diversity. Learning opportunities should
give the children hope, expertise to create stability and peaceful
atmosphere even when facing considerable distress. Dakar's Forum
has integrated this issue in its Framework of action.
in Situations of Emergency and Crisis a recent intervening domain
born with regards to the prevalence of situations of crisis
throughout the world. Inter-agency cooperation's approach in
this respect is based on five basic principles which called
to be reinforced: Decentralization, information, cooperation,
capacity building and prevention.
a question, inter alia, of:
in Situations of Emergency and Crisis
of the Framework of Action and EFA 2000 Follow-up as defined
at the Forum of Dakar includes six major flagship inter-agency
programmes inscribed on the agenda. It is about of:
strategic, normative and preventive functions in matter
of emergency education
Member States in definition of priorities, preparation and
implementation of projects and specific programs
in contexts of crisis universal values as the education
for peace, tolerance, human rights including child's rights,
cooperation mechanisms with all our partners and particularly
with the United Nations Agencies and the NGOs.
be identified for each initiative and not longer than 2002,
objectives and programmes to be integrated in the National EFA
Plans, implementation strategies as well as financial resource
mobilization mechanisms on the basis of a large consultation
of the WEB SITE by UNESCO in cooperation with the University
of Pittsburgh in the field of GINIE Project (Global Information
Networks Education) and expanded to all partners and Member
States represents a good base for the inter-agency cooperation
which should be strengthened.
need of reinforcing the inter-agency cooperation
cooperation was established in 1998 in the light of the evaluation
work "EFA Assessment Study" and was presented at the Dakar Strategy
Session. UNESCO, UNHCR, UNICEF, WFP, Swedish International Development
Agency (AIDS), Norwegian Council for Refugees (NRC), USAID and
7 other NGOs had to cooperate for this survey.
to this close collaboration, the Dakar April 2000 Strategy Session
had the success we all know. Our presence here, today, is owed
to this on-going success.
us have many responsibilities in the field of this inter-agency
collaboration. Some of them are:
Inter-agency initiative FRESH (focusing Resources for effective
Inter-agency Working Group on AIDS and Education
Early Childhood Regional Capacity Building Initiative
Literacy For All initiative
10-Year United Nations Girls Education Initiative
Initiative on Education in Situations of Emergency and Crisis
clear that the Dakar Framework of Action which aims to reach
Education For All (EFA) objectives in 2015 would not make sense
if millions of children remaining at the edge because of violence,
armed conflicts, natural disasters or extreme poverty and would
not exercise their rights to go to school under all circumstances.
It is the challenge of the 21 Century for which ways and means
should be defined in order to reach it.
of implementation of EFA Programme: The Strategy of Consultation
consultation which was held in Geneva from 8 to 10 November
2000 upon a large participation is a follow-up of ministers
recommendations present in the Strategy Session on Education
in Emergencies held as part of the Dakar Forum of April 2000.
This consultation was convened jointly by UNESCO, UNHCR and
UNICEF. The purpose is to "to agree on practical strategies
and mechanisms to achieve more effective inter-agency collaboration
at global, regional and country level" as recommended by Dakar
Framework of Action.
to the delegations from the 3 convening agencies, the meeting
gathered representatives of WFP, UNDP, World Bank, bi-lateral
donors and over 20 nongovernmental organisations currently engaged
in education programmes in countries in crisis.
teams had to debate of strategy and content issues related
at the definition of priorities and strategies and the implementation
of Education in Situations of Emergency and Crisis
countries concerned in the preparation of their National
Plan and Framework of Action in components of Education
in Situations of Emergency and Crisis
in place regional mechanisms to reinforce information sharing,
capacities and exchanges between countries
mobilization of resources and their efficient utilization
endorsed the following set of guiding principles as a basis
and learning materials,
education, formal and non-formal,
training in emergency education,
education in the field of the UN Girls' Education Initiative
of agency staff,
sharing and networks,
this framework the consultation reached a number of key agreement
on interagency collaboration:
to inter-agency collaboration at all levels (local, national,
on existing mechanisms
gender sensitivity, strive for gender balance
to any agency committed to education in emergencies
information and datas regarding situations
small time-bound, task-bound teams
virtual communication when possible
convenor role for task teams among agencies
members of task teams to commit resources to achieve effectively
the programmed tasks
input from and output to beneficiaries and communities without
access to the network.
task teams with clear time-bound tasks were established in
the following areas:
- the network
of organisations and individuals committed in Education for
All in situations of emergencies and crisis should be sustained
to promote and support effective and coherent coordination
at local, national and regional level;
- the "Network
on Education in Emergencies" therefore established will have
a mission, through its activities, to reinforce the coordination
between the humanitarian assistance coordinating structures
and the EFA programmes follow-up; the Network will be guided
by a Steering Group consisting of representatives of UNESCO,
UNHCR and UNICEF plus one donors representative and one representative
will use the existing GINIE website, in construction with UNESCO
and Pittsburgh University with the support of USAID, and emer-edu
listserve as the principal medium for sustaining information
sharing and networking.
of this strategic and logistic framework would enable the elaboration
of the National Emergency Plans before December 2002. The institutional
and operational methods, settled meanwhile, would hence be able
to follow-up the whole programmes and evaluate every year the
steps with regards to the objectives of EFA 2015.
sharing and networking
resources and supplies
of implementation of education programmes in emergencies
education, formal and non-formal.