Blog: Responding to Emergencies with Education
by Joris van Bommel, Global Partnership for Education
Unfortunately, the current situations in South Sudan and the Central African Republic do underline once more how important it is for the global community to provide greater and more effective support to education in fragile and conflict-affected states, including in emergency and early recovery situations. More than half of the world’s 57 million out-of-school children live in countries affected by emergencies or are in an early recovery phase.
It is imperative for the Global Partnership for Education to be ready and to be responsive, also in these situations. Although fragile contexts vary enormously in their characteristics, they present specific challenges such as:
- Issues of security can affect access to schools and communities and limit the implementation of education programs and make them more expensive. Insecurity can also expose schools, teachers and school children to violence and attacks;
- Issues of governance may include unrecognized governments, political instability, accountability issues and corruption, situations where governments prohibit access to populations or where there is a civil war;
- Issues of capacity like the inability to collect and analyze data to make sound policy decisions or to develop, implement and report on sector plans and programs. The capacity of development partners in the country may also vary;
- Issues around coordination and donor policies: It is important to ensure coherent, coordinated support, get donors to finance programs; have development partners remain operational.