Around the world, education is in crisis. Not only COVID-19 and its fallouts but also a rise in armed conflicts worldwide is destroying hope for millions of children. That’s why restoring access to education took top priority for War Child in 2021. Their Annual Report shows how they have taken learning far beyond the classroom ultimately reaching many more children in need.
Education in Crisis
Due to the fallouts of the COVID-19 pandemic, nearly 260 million children have no access to education – the highest number in over a decade. What’s more, deep budget cuts and rising poverty means almost 10 million children may never return to school.
Add armed conflict into the mix and their dreams of a brighter future seem more and more uncertain.
War Child works exclusively to improve the resilience and wellbeing of children affected by conflict. But in order to uphold children’s right to a healthy mind, we must not forget their right to learn. This notion shaped their activities in 2021 – as outlined in their new Annual Report.
Reaching More Children In Need
War Child met the needs of 648, 477 children and adults over the course of 2021 – more than twice as much as 2020. They delivered a vital combination of education, psychosocial support and child protection among vulnerable communities in more than 14 countries. By investing in their growth as an organisation, they plan to support many more children affected by war and conflict in the years to come.
The award-winning EdTech innovation Can’t Wait to Learn really stole the spotlight – finding new ways in pandemic conditions to provide 24,591 children with foundational numeracy and maths skills. In refugee camps and host communities in Lebanon and Uganda, the roll out of the Can’t Wait to Learn@Home adaptation ensured children could continue their learning journey remotely.
In DR Congo, a specially designed programme allowed children to ‘catch up’ on vital months of missed schooling. In Colombia, War Child embraced a new kind of education – one that sees children actively contribute to peacebuilding efforts in their communities.
Responding Rapidly to External Events
Beyond these efforts, the year was dictated by a number of external events. The May bombardment in Gaza saw the organisation once again put its Fast Aid framework into action collaborating with the Dutch Relief Alliance and partners to deliver an emergency response.
Meanwhile, a joint study with World Vision confirmed War Child’s fears surrounding COVID-19’s impact on young minds. Armed with this evidence, they presented their findings at four international conferences.
As COVID-19 swept Africa, Uganda experienced the longest school closures in the world. Alongside a wealth of distance learning projects for children, they also addressed the stress and burnout that teachers are facing through the progression of the CORE for Teachers method.
These represent just a few of War Child’s achievements. Find out in full how they responded to global developments and crises.
Working Closer Together in 2022
The number of children living in active war zones is on the rise. On top of that, a record 50 million children are on the move due to conflict and climate-related disaster. Then there’s the COVID-19 pandemic which continues to throw a massive spanner in the works of the humanitarian sector as a whole.
That’s why War Child will rapidly scale up its activities in 2022 – working with and through a global network of partners. To do this they will put months of preparation into practice with the roll out of their Global Shared Platform.
As we move to a shared way of working, we are calling on everyone to give this crisis their highest priority. “Each and every one of us has the capacity to take action”, says War Child CEO Ramin Shahzamani. “But to do this right, we need each other.”