Executive Director's Corner

Yasmine Sherif speaking with a kid from Lebanon
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Join Executive Director Yasmine Sherif in Education Cannot Wait’s Executive Director’s Corner. 


ECW Executive Director Yasmine Sherif

Yasmine Sherif is the Executive Director of Education Cannot Wait (ECW). A lawyer specialized in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law (LL.M), she has over 30 years of experience with the United Nations and international NGOs. 

Ms. Sherif has served in some of the most crisis-affected areas of the world, including Afghanistan, the Middle East, the Balkans, Cambodia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sudan as well as in New York and Geneva. She has led high-level missions to numerous conflict and crisis-affected countries. Her expertise spans across the education, humanitarian, development, human rights, gender and peacekeeping spectrum.

She is the author of the book, The Case for Humanity: An Extraordinary Session, and a Champion for ‘No Lost Generation.’ In 2017, she received the annual award Sweden’s UN Friend of the Year, in 2020 she was awarded the Global Educator Award in the United States, and in 2022 she received on behalf of Education Cannot Wait, the prestigious Mother Teresa Award.

Ms. Sherif also received an award from the United Nations Association-USA Brooklyn Chapter in 2023. She has also been honored as a Listee in Marquis Who's Who for her dedication to the field of international affairs and law, and leadership of ECW, as well as in the “Women Leaders 2024 Collector’s Edition" as a woman leader to look up to in 2024. 

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All Statements and Updates

Afghanistan attacks
“Education Cannot Wait joins the international community in calling for an end to attacks against children and schools following yesterday’s deadly attacks on the Mumtaz Tuition Center and Abdul Raheem Shaheed High School in western Kabul, Afghanistan.” “I am profoundly shocked by this senseless violence and brutality perpetrated against children...
Education in emergencies.
Director's Corner
Look around the world at this very moment. Whether we look at it in stark numbers and statistics, whether we look at it as a generational loss of basic human rights, including the right to an education, or whether we look inwardly and feel the unspeakable human suffering and devastation taking place, we all agree: we are at a historically low point in our collective humanity.
Afghanistan secondary school
This statement is attributed to Yasmine Sherif, Director of Education Cannot Wait (ECW), the UN’s global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises. Despite the assurance that they are “committed to the right to education of all citizens,” Afghanistan’s de facto authorities announced this week that they will not...
Director's Corner
Director's Corner
For far too long, millions of parents have struggled to send their children and adolescents to school amidst armed conflicts, forced displacement, climate change-induced disasters and COVID-19. Now, the brutal daily reality of millions in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and South America is playing out in Europe. We are...
International Women's Day
Director's Corner
The International Women’s Day is not a celebration – it is a reminder that we have yet to empower young girls in crisis to access their inherent right to a quality education. Republished with permission from Modern Diplomacy . On the International Women’s Day, ECW celebrates the role of education...
Girl sitting in a classroom in Ukraine.
The escalating conflict and ongoing military actions in Ukraine are putting children and adolescents at grave risk. The crisis is threatening the lives and wellbeing of an estimated 7.5 million girls and boys across the country, including potential profound disruptions to their education. We call for a strict adherence to...
ECW Director Yasmine Sherif
Director's Corner
Conflict, forced displacement, climate change and COVID-19 are disrupting the education of millions of crisis-affected children and adolescents around the world.
Director's Corner
Director's Corner
By Yasmine Sherif When she was just 16, Nujeen Mustafa made a 3,500-mile journey from Syria to Germany in a steel wheelchair. Nujeen didn’t attend school in Syria like the other girls and boys – even before the war broke out. She was one of the millions of children denied...
Awareness Must Rise_Action Cannot Wait
Director's Corner
Just weeks ago, the Geneva Global Hub for Education in Emergencies was inaugurated. Thanks to the Government of Switzerland, Education Cannot Wait and key partners have taken a major leap forward in strengthening collaboration to accelerate crucial education in emergencies and protracted crises response. Extending the global reach of our...
Yasmine Sherif in the field.
Director's Corner
This year’s International Day of Education marked an important milestone for Education Cannot Wait, with Germany announcing a ground-breaking new, additional €200 million contribution to ECW, making it the billion-dollar global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises, hosted by the United Nations.
Education in Emergencies
Director's Corner
View original on the World Education Blog . By Yasmine Sherif, Director, Education Cannot Wait, and Joseph Nhan-O’Reilly, Director, International Parliamentary Network for Education COVID-19 has upended our world, threatening our health, destroying economies and livelihoods, and deepening poverty and inequalities. It also created the single largest disruption to education...
ECW Director Yasmine Sherif
Article re-posted with permission from Modern Diplomacy. The future of humanity hangs in the balance. Acute threats of conflict, COVID-19, climate change, poverty, displacement, hunger and other factors are pushing millions more people – with children the most vulnerable and hardest hit – to the edge in humanitarian crises around...

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Resolutions are just tiny steps. To make them a reality requires Action. Until it becomes action on the ground, those words mean very little. Not until you help that child to access a safe, quality education have you actually achieved the result.

Yasmine Sherif, ECW Executive Director