03.06.2018 - UNESCO Office in Kabul

With a new start comes optimism

Mohammad Musa: ‘I learnt new things in this workshop, which will support the sustainability of the literacy programme.” ©UNESCO/ Sidiqzai

Adult literacy courses to reach 5,000 Afghans, with support from new grant from the Government of South Korea

KABUL – 21 MAY 2018 | With support from UNESCO, the Ministry of Education Literacy Department is providing adult literacy courses across Afghanistan. Now, a new grant from the Republic of Korea, worth 1.75 Million USD, is helping the Afghan government provide more literacy courses for an additional 5,000 adults.  

More funding brings sustainable learning

The new grant will expand the Non-Formal Education curriculum framework from grade 4 to 9, and provide for 250 teachers. It will also support gender: by end 2018, it is estimated that 60% of students will be women.

The new grant helps to overcome operational challenges, like the rugged terrain, which prevents mobility of trained teachers.  With this important funding,  the Literacy Department will be able provide additional    training to the literacy managers and monitoring officers – this provides critical support to the sustainability of the programme and the necessity of ongoing training for the Literacy Department staff.

With a new start comes optimism

During a recent training workshop, many participants shared their enthusiasm about the adult literacy projects. In attendance were 42 managers and monitoring officers from from Kabul, Farah, Parwan, Panjsher and Logar provinces. At the comopletion of the training workshop, the trainees will, in-turn, be obligated to provide training to literacy facilitators in their respective districts. This “cascade” affect provides sustainability and increases the sense of ownership by all involved.

The Workshop sessions covered language literacy in Pashto and Dari, Numeracy courses, teaching methods, gender balance and information management training using the Ministry of Education’s Non-Formal Education – Management Information System (NFE-MIS).

Mohammad Musa, M&E Officer from Mir-Bacha Kot district of Kabul  highlighted that he had  learnt many new things in the workshop, and found it highly valuable.  ”. He added, “We would like to recommend greater focus on Skills Based Literacy than Basic General Literacy, because poor people are more interested in gaining better income, so they can enjoy a better life.”

Survey shows literacy affects economy and gender

Recent statistics from a survey by the Aid Afghanistan for Education show that compared to men, there are more women who cannot read and write.  Low literacy rates  among Afghan youths and adults  has an engendered economic impact: as a result of three-decades of war, there are an estimated 1.5 million widows who now have the sole responsibility for upkeep of their families.  In addressing the specific challenges women face – especially those solely responsible for their families, in addition to the Basic General Literacy course, the Literacy Department with the support of UNESCO, has begun to implement and emphasizes a Skills Based Literacy programme, currently supporting approximately 18,000 learners with practical skills and the necessary toolkits to begin a simple trade for income generation.  

For more information about UNESCOs Adult Literacy and Non-Formal Education program, please email our team leader Mr George Kadiri at: g.kadiri(at)unesco.org

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