'Education crucial in curbing poverty'

Staff Reporter/Dubai
Filed on July 12, 2015
Education crucial in curbing poverty
Tariq Al Gurg (right) at the Oslo Summit on education. - Supplied photo


Dubai Cares participates in Oslo Summit on Education.

Dubai Cares took part in the recent Oslo Summit on Education for Development to discuss issues critical to achieving universal access to quality education for children.

The summit, convened by the Government of Norway in collaboration with UN Special Envoy for Global Education, Gordon Brown, brought together heads of states and governments from developing and developed countries, ministers, heads of UN agencies and regional organisations, members of the business community and civil society.

The Dubai Cares delegation, led by Chief Executive Officer of Dubai Cares, Tariq Al Gurg, also attended a high-level meeting that took place on the sidelines of the summit, co-organised by Brown, the Global Partnership for Education (GPE) and United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef) in coordination with the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

During the meeting, attendees discussed the creation of a Global Humanitarian Fund for Education in Emergencies, which seeks to protect the most vulnerable children (in conflict and disaster zones) and get them back in school.

The fund also seeks to strengthen existing mechanisms, rapidly coordinate and deliver education in emergencies, and leverage new finance. More than 20 million children are currently being denied education because they live in conflict and disaster zones and despite the growing numbers of children caught up in tragedy, in 2014, only 1 per cent of overall humanitarian aid was spent on education.

Speaking from the summit, Tariq Al Gurg said: "We are inspired by the firm belief of His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, that education is the most effective tool to break the cycle of poverty...According to the World Bank, people in fragile and conflicted-affected situations are more than twice as likely to be under-nourished as those in other developing countries; more than three times as likely to be unable to send their children to school; twice as likely to see their children die before they reach the age of five; and more than twice as likely to get clean drinking water. This makes the needs of children living in fragile states an urgent priority for us. Our presence at the summit has enabled us to contribute our technical know-how on this and other matters as well as to engage with like-minded organisations for potential collaboration, building on our guiding principle of working through partnerships."

The summit, which was also attended by the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, focused on issues that needed to be resolved urgently in order to reach the 58 million children still being denied their right to education.

The main topics under discussion spanned four key issues: education in emergencies, investment in education, quality of education and girls' education.

The agenda of the summit was built on the outcomes of the World Education Forum in Incheon in South Korea, also attended by Dubai Cares team.

Dubai Cares, with the support of the UAE community, has been facilitating change and development in children's education in developing communities around the globe. Its programmes currently reach more than 13 million beneficiaries in 39 developing countries.

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