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United Nations Girls' Education Initiative (UNGEI)

Members of flagship programme

All United Nations entities belong. The following have contributed to the ongoing work of the Task Force: DAW/DESA/UN, DGO, ILO, OCHA, UNAIDS, UNDP, UNESCO, UNFPA, UNHCR, UNICEF, UNIFEM, WFP, WHO and the World Bank. Non-governmental organisations such as the Forum of African Women Educationalists (FAWE) are also participating.


The goal of the United Nations ten year Girls' Education Initiative is to mount a sustained campaign to improve the quality and availability of girls' education through a collaborative partnership of different entities within and outside the United Nations system.

The Initiative is designed to contribute to the elimination of gender discrimination and gender disparity in education systems through action at global, national, district and community levels. The Initiative brings together existing resources at the country level and uses them more efficiently and effectively. The Initiative starts with countries committing themselves to take action. It then focuses on areas of intervention that are known to produce results, are supported by a consolidated effort of all development partners and build on good practice and experience.

For more information, please see UNGEI Concept Paper:

The overall goal is translated into five strategic objectives designed to assist countries in meeting their education for all goals and targets, as well as the education goals of other United Nations international conferences. The objectives call for:
  • building political and resource commitments,
  • ending the gender gap,
  • ending gender bias and discrimination within education systems,
  • helping girls' education in crisis, conflict and post-conflict situations, and
  • eliminating ingrained gender bias that limits the demand for girls' education.

For more information, please see UNGEI Action Plan:


1. Direct support to countries through the following activities:

  • Identify target countries with low girls' enrolment and with gender inequality, using the criteria that were developed in 2000.
  • Provide guidance to countries on how to address girls' education in CCA/UNDAF roll-out and mid-term reviews, including through instruments such as Poverty Reduction Strategic Papers (PRSPs) and Section Wide Approaches (SWAPs).
  • Facilitate integration of content and concerns regarding girls' education into CCA/UNDAF facilitator and country team training.
  • Review and advise on country CCAs, UNDAFs and RC reports, and advise on collaborative/joint programming as appropriate.

2. Development of a supportive environment for country work through the following activities:

  • Advocate and mobilize partnerships for girls' education, concentrating on strategic global and regional events, and international conferences and their follow-up, and encouraging the same in countries. (Examples include a panel on the ECOSOC high level segment, a session at the GASS on children and an event at the forthcoming GASS on HIV/AIDS.)
  • Identify capacity for different substantive components of girls' education within participating entities.

3. Related documents

4. Meetings

  • Technical Meeting on Partnering the UN Girls' Education Initiative to Intensify Progress towards Gender Equality in Education, Paris 21-23 January, 2002

Contact information

Mary Joy Pigozzi
UNICEF, Education Section, H7A
3 UN Plaza
New York, NY 10017
Tel: 212-824-6618
Fax: 212-326-7129