German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Svenja Schulze, announced €200 million (US$228.3 million) in new funding for Education Cannot Wait (ECW), the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises.
With this new multi-year contribution, Germany becomes ECW’s top donor, with over €318.8 million (US$362.7 million) in total contributions to the Fund.
ECW also reaches the milestone of over US$1 billion mobilized from public and private donors in just 5 years of operations, making it one of the fastest growing initiatives in the UN.
Education Cannot Wait Director Yasmine Sherif joined Minister Schulze in Geneva for the announcement on the International Day of Education.
“Education is the key that enables millions of girls and boys to break through the cycle of poverty and lead a dignified life. The COVID-19 pandemic is threatening to wipe out the educational successes of recent decades. There are also millions of displaced children who cannot go to school. The poorest people suffer the most, especially girls and children with disabilities. We have a shared responsibility not to lose this generation,” said Federal Minister Svenja Schulze.
“These crucial contributions are essential in achieving our goals to provide every crisis-affected girl and boy with the hope and opportunity that a quality education provides. We call on all governments and private sector partners to follow Germany’slead and support Education Cannot Wait’s mission with US$1 billion in urgent funding,” said Gordon Brown, UN Special Envoy for Global Education.
“We warmly thank the people of Germany and the German Government for this generous, ground-breaking contribution. ECW is committed to ensuring no child is left behind as we race to deliver Sustainable Development Goal 4: inclusive, equitable, quality education, and work to build a more peaceful, more prosperous world for generations to come,” said Sherif.
The funding will help ECW reach more of the 128 million children caught in humanitariann crises with education. It is estimated that between 11 million and 20 million girls will never return to school after COVID, threatening decades of progress made toward gender equality.
Without education, these children face risks of child marriage, early pregnancy, sexual exploitation, child labor, trafficking, and recruitment into armed groups.