Minister of Education, Unicef and Partners Launch 3-year Education Cannot Wait Programme in Peru
“On behalf of the Government of Peru, I would like to thank the commitment of the United Nations, partner governments such as Canada and civil society organizations for working together on the challenges we face in education, especially those that involve the most disadvantaged children and adolescents, such as migrants”, with these words, Peru´s Minister of Education Ricardo Cuenca welcomed the of the Education Cannot Wait (ECW) Programme, which seeks to respond to the challenges of education in emergencies.
ECW is a global fund dedicated to education in emergencies. “We first worked with ECW in 2019 to respond to the Venezuelan migration crisis and now we are starting a multi-year development programme that will allow us to directly reach the migrant population settled in Lima and the region of La Libertad,” said Ana de Mendoza, UNICEF Representative in Peru.
The multi-year programme called “Promoting Inclusive Education with equal opportunities for migrant and refugee children and adolescents in host communities in Peru” will be implemented from 2021 to 2023. The goal is to improve the education of 30,000 migrant? children, adolescents and their families. The programme starts with a “seed” fund of US$ 7,400,000 and is expected to raise, by the end of the project, a total of US$ 13 million.
Igor Garafulic, United Nations Resident Coordinator in Peru noted that the focus of this multi-year programme is the social integration of refugees and migrants, including the full inclusion of children and adolescents in quality education. “We welcome efforts to open doors for them. The evidence we have from before the pandemic confirms that migration has had a positive impact and can have an even greater positive impact on our economy and our society.”
As the project launch coincided with the celebration of International Women’s Day, Minister Cuenca highlighted that migrant girls and adolescents face a triple challenge to stay in school: “They must ask for permission to study because many times there are no conditions for them to keep doing so; they have to try to insert themselves into spaces that are not theirs; and, finally, they must break with cultural norms that tell them that what is different is scary”.
Ralph Jansen, Ambassador of Canada to Peru, stated that interventions such as this one must have a clear gender approach: “This approach guarantees the fulfillment of other rights and helps to guarantee a dignified life. Everything done for the benefit of migrant children and adolescents has an impact on their emotional health, and this is a fundamental aspect in this intervention”.
The project has five expected outcomes. The first is to achieve better access to an inclusive and quality education, the second is staying in the educational system. The third objective is to develop life skills and socio-emotional capabilities. The fourth is that authorities and officials improve decision-making on access and educational inclusion based on available data and evidence. Finally, the ECW project seeks to promote the mobilization of resources.
This new multi-year ECW programme was designed by a working group made up of the Ministry of Education, RET, Plan International, Save the Children, UNESCO and UNICEF. By joint agreement, UNICEF has led the programme since 4 January 2021. The Steering Committee is made up of the Ministry of Education, the Embassy of Canada, the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office and the Roundtable for the Fight against Poverty.
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