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. 


Yasmine Sherif Portrait

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.


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All Statements and Updates

In the Arab Region, Education Cannot Wait.
View the original article on the global media platform openDemocracy. New Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report published by UNESCO shows forced displacement holding back a generation of learners across the Arab region. Hassan is 16 years old. He fled Syria five years ago with nothing but a school bag on...
Opinion World leaders can and must do more for girls
By Yasmine Sherif and Stephen Twigg Originally published on Devex 16-year-old Kwanye’s education came to an end after militants started kidnapping girls from her school. She lives in the Lake Chad Basin, where one of the world’s most severe and underreported humanitarian crises has left 2.2 million people displaced, half...
CRITICAL IMPACT OF CONFLICT ON CHILDREN’S MENTAL HEALTH AND PSYCHOSOCIAL WELLBEING By Yasmine Sherif, Director, Education Cannot Wait, and Leslie Snider, Director MHPSS Collaborative for Children and Families ‘Suicide bombs, landmines, unexploded ordinance, air strikes and other forms of explosives account for three quarters of child deaths and injuries across...
Delivering Education In Crises
Yasmine Sherif, director of Education Cannot Wait, contends that for children and youth in crises, genuine survival depends not only on meeting basic physical needs, but also on ensuring access to quality education and the opportunity for a productive future. Special contribution by Yasmine Sherif, Director Education Cannot Wait to...
Why is education important for Afghanistan? While Afghanistan is making progress in improving access to education, approximately 3.7 million children remain out of school. 2017 saw nearly half a million newly displaced people in Afghanistan, as well as an influx of over 600,000 Afghans returning from Iran and Pakistan. Droughts...
Education in Crisis: An Inherent Human Right
WE NEED TO STEP UP GLOBAL SUPPORT TO FILL THE US$8.5 FUNDING GAP FOR EDUCATION IN CRISIS By Yasmine Sherif There is a US$8.5 billion funding gap for education in crisis that has left some 75 million children in some of the harshest living conditions on the planet without access...
Fatma is a six-year-old Sudanese refugee living in a refugee camp in the east of Chad. For girls like Fatma, the security and stability of education provide hope for a brighter future. ©UNICEFChad/2018/Kim
By Yasmine Sherif The future of our humanity relies on the young generation. In a world that still bares the deep wounds of war, hunger, displacement, conflict and inequalities, we need to step up to find lasting solutions for our next generation of leaders and citizens of the world. At...
Hanaa, 8, who was paralysed by an exploding bomb and lost the use of her legs, solves a problem on a whiteboard in a classroom at a school in east Aleppo city, Syrian Arab Republic, February 2018. Hanaa's dream is to become a physiotherapist to help children like her. ©UNICEF/Al-Issa
New York, 24 July 2018 – Education Cannot Wait (ECW) is proud to sign the Global Disability Summit 2018 Charter for change. As a global fund for education in emergencies, ECW’s overarching goal is to support the delivery of quality education to the millions of children and youth whose schooling...
New York, 9 June 2018 – The historic announcement today by G7 leaders – including Canada, the European Union, Germany, Japan, United Kingdom – and the World Bank of a US$2.9B (C$3.8B) investment in education for women and girls in conflict and crisis marks an inspiring moment of solidarity. I...
Statement of the Education Cannot Wait Director on the EU Increase of Spending for Education in Emergencies and Protracted Crises
I applaud the new EU policy framework aiming to increase the humanitarian funding for education in emergencies and crises to 10 per cent of its overall humanitarian aid budget as of 2019. This announcement marks a key milestone in our collective efforts to fill the funding gap to meet the...
Today, an estimated 75 million children and youth are caught up in emergencies, crisis and conflict. Education cannot wait is dedicated to mobilizing the resources and catalyzing the collective efforts from a wide range of aid actors to meet their most urgent immediate needs and lay the ground to ensure...
Show Humanity for Her
By Yasmine Sherif, Director Education Cannot Wait (ECW) Conflicts and disasters are about destruction. Discrimination is about disempowerment. Combine the two and we get a glimpse of the raw reality affecting millions of girls. Standing amidst the ruins of their towns, communities and families, they are also shackled by marginalization...

Latest Videos

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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 Director