Education Cannot Wait

Education Cannot Wait Advocates Children Amidst Crisis

The United Nations announced a plan last week to better educate youth in countries devastated by war, natural disasters, armed conflict, disease and health emergencies. The program, called Education Cannot Wait, intends to reach over 13 million children over five years, with hopes of reaching 75 million by 2030.

Gordon Brown, the UN’s envoy for global education, announced the initiative last week at the first World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul, addressing the issue as a “full-blown global crisis” that will impact generations.

“Without school, young children caught up in emergencies are at risk of becoming the youngest laborers in the field, the youngest brides at the altar, the youngest soldiers in the trench, and in some cases, the youngest recruits vulnerable to extremism and radicalization,” said Brown, according to Times of Oman.

The fund anticipates to raise $3.8 billion within five years. Dubai Cares, the European Union, Netherlands, Norway, the UK Department for International Development, and the United States Government are among the first financial contributors.

Education Cannot Wait exemplifies how humanitarian initiatives can be tightly woven with education outreach and technology. “Traditionally, the two have been different,” wrote Howard LaFranchi of The Christian Science Monitor. “But as conflicts stretch longer and climate-related disasters intensify, more people are being displaced longer, and humanitarian crises are evolving into development setbacks.”

Jennifer Ortakales

Jennifer Ortakales

Jennifer is a Boston-based freelance journalist who has covered emerging fashion and New York Fashion Week for Papercut magazine. When she isn't talking people's ears off, she studies art history and reconstructs thrift clothes into her own designs.