Education Cannot Wait Delivers US$2.6 Million to Provide Emergency Education Relief for Children Impacted by Indonesia Tsunami

Available languages:

To re-establish education for 60,000 children, Education Cannot Wait partners with Government of Indonesia, UNICEF and Save the Children, to provide temporary learning spaces, educational supplies, coordinated responses and training for teachers

New York

To provide immediate relief for the boys and girls whose lives have been shattered by the devastating 28 September earthquakes and tsunami in Indonesia, Education Cannot Wait announced today a US$2.6 million first emergency response allocation that will benefit over 60,000 children and youth.

Recent estimates from national authorities indicate that over 2,000 lives have been lost in the disaster, which displaced more than 200,000 people and directly impacted more than 160,000 students.

“A tsunami is a horrible experience that renders people and communities completely powerless. There is no mercy. The devastating tragedy in Indonesia is ripping families apart and disrupting the life of children and youth in the most painful ways. We need to get these boys and girls back in safe and secure learning environments immediately. It is about restoring the safe foundation and necessary lifeline for children without delay and thus their education cannot wait,” said Yasmine Sherif, Director of Education Cannot Wait, a new global Fund that seeks to raise US$1.8 billion to provide access to quality, reliable education for 8.9 million children living in crisis and emergencies by 2021.

“By providing immediate support to re-establish education for these children and youth, we are taking an important first step in returning the people of Indonesia to normalcy and in contributing to a sustainable humanitarian response that protects and brings hope” Sherif said.

Through ECW’s funding, 910 temporary classrooms will be established, and children and teachers will receive educational supplies. An additional 2,700 teachers – of whom 75 per cent are female – will be trained so they can provide the necessary psychosocial support for these children, who have lost their homes, and sometimes their parents and loved-ones in this disaster. The intervention will target the most vulnerable girls and boys, including orphans, children who experienced severe traumas, children living in poverty and children with disabilities. Ensuring safe and inclusive access to schools is a priority for Education Cannot Wait, and over 50 per cent of the beneficiaries will be girls.

While the intervention will largely focus on getting children back in safe and reliable learning environments, additional support will be provided to conduct a rapid education impact and needs assessment, create a back-to-school campaign, and ensure a coordinated and integrated response between the various agencies and first responders on the ground under the overall coordination of the Ministry of Education and Culture.

At least 1,185 schools – from early childhood learning centers to secondary schools – have been directly affected in four districts of Sulawesi, according to the latest figures from UNICEF. In all, some 1.5 million people have been affected, and observations from local sources show a high number of separated and unaccompanied children, as well as missing children and teachers.

With children out of school since the earthquake, many of the basic human needs that are connected with safe learning environments – including school meals, child protection, safety from sexual abuse, and access to hygiene and sanitation facilities – have been limited, further exacerbating existing health and nutrition factors affecting Indonesia’s children.

The 12-month projects will be implemented by UNICEF and the local chapter of Save the Children (YSTC) in close collaboration with other partners including the localized entities of World Vision (WVI) and Plan International (YPII). All activities will be implemented in coordination with the Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture through the Safe School Secretariat, which has already allocated approximately US$28 million for the response, rehabilitation and recovery in the education sector.

To download the PDF version click here

About Education Cannot Wait (ECW)

ECW is a global fund launched by international humanitarian and development aid actors, along with public and private donors, to deliver education in conflict and crisis settings. The Fund’s investment modalities are designed to usher in a more collaborative approach among actors on the ground, ensuring relief and development organizations join forces to achieve education outcomes. ECW’s Secretariat is hosted by UNICEF in its Headquarters in New York. Additional information is available at For press enquiries and to schedule an interview, contact: Ms. Anouk Desgroseilliers,, +1 917 640-6820

For Press Inquiries:

Anouk Desgroseilliers:

Kent Page: