Sudan Crisis and Flood Response: Education Cannot Wait Announces US$2 Million First Emergency Response Grant: Total ECW Funding $23.7 Million

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Children in Sudan affected by the floods

With 7 million children out of school, fast-acting grant delivered by Norwegian Refugee Council, Save the Children and World Food Programme provides life-saving access to education in response to climate change-related flooding.  

New York

More than one in three children are out of school in Sudan: 7 million girls and boys denied their human right to receive a quality education.

In response to the crisis – made even worse by severe climate change-related flooding – Education Cannot Wait (ECW) today announced a fast-acting US$2 million, 12-month grant that will provide access to safe learning environments for children and adolescents in the worst-hit flood zones of Sudan.   

Delivered by the Norwegian Refugee Council, Save the Children and World Food Programme, the investment will reach 64,000 flood-affected children. An additional 19,000 children will receive school meals through the World Food Programme.

The investment builds on ECW’s Multi-Year Resilience Programme in Sudan, which strives to reach over 100,000 children.

ECW funding in Sudan totals $23.7 million to date. Nevertheless, approximately 65% of the education in emergencies humanitarian appeal remains unfunded in Sudan.

“The destruction of schools and learning due to climate change is increasing by the day. This is the third Education Cannot Wait emergency response in the past month alone. We must act now for the children of Sudan. All children and adolescents affected have now had their education disrupted. Without safe and protective learning environments, girls especially face grave risks of childhood marriage and gender-based violence. Boys face recruitment into armed groups and forced labor. Education provides these children and adolescents with continued learning and prevents additional hardship and suffering,” said Yasmine Sherif, Director of Education Cannot Wait, the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises.

“With millions of children out of school, and millions of others suffering chronic hunger, school meals are not only a necessity to children of Sudan, but a life saver. To many, the school meal they receive at school, is the only nutritious meal they get in a day,” said Eddie Rowe, World Food Programme Country Director/Representative.

“The people of Sudan are suffering multiple crises – conflict, displacement, economic collapse, and now floods. Through this emergency response grant, we’re able to help restore hope and a sense of normalcy for thousands of displaced girls and boys in Darfur and Kordofan whose schools have since been destroyed by the floods this year” said William Carter, Norwegian Refugee Council Country Director.

“Climate change effects, including severe flooding, have destroyed or damaged more than 600 schools in Sudan this year. This grant will allow us to ensure that students can return to a safe, quality learning environment, through rehabilitation of classrooms, teacher training and the provision of learning materials, to ensure that children can develop and learn,” said Arshad Malik, Save the Children Country Director.

More than 1 million school-aged children in Sudan are internally displaced, and 4.5 million are food insecure. Annual floods, made worse by the climate crisis, impacted over 200,000 school-aged children in 2022.

The First Emergency Response will be implemented in the four states where education infrastructure has been most damaged and school children most affected: North Kordofan, South Kordofan, North Darfur and Kassala states.

The investment will provide access to safe drinking water and school meals to address the catastrophic levels of food insecurity impacting more than 26% of Sudan’s children. Temporary learning spaces will be constructed, damaged classrooms will be repaired, and children will receive psychosocial support to recover from the trauma of displacement and violence.

Worldwide 222 million crisis-impacted children and adolescents are in need of educational support. ECW and its global strategic partners are calling on governments, donors, the private sector and high-net-worth individuals to urgently mobilize additional resources to realize #222MillionDreams✨📚 in lead up to the Fund’s High-Level Financing Conference, which will take place in Geneva in February 2023.

Note to Editors

About Education Cannot Wait (ECW):
Education Cannot Wait (ECW) is the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises. We support quality education outcomes for refugee, internally displaced and other crisis-affected girls and boys, so no one is left behind. ECW works through the multilateral system to both increase the speed of responses in crises and connect immediate relief and longer-term interventions through multi-year programming. ECW works in close partnership with governments, public and private donors, UN agencies, civil society organizations, and other humanitarian and development aid actors to increase efficiencies and end siloed responses. ECW urgently appeals to public and private sector donors for expanded support to reach even more vulnerable children and youth.  The Education Cannot Wait High-Level Financing Conference, co-hosted by ECW and Switzerland, and co-convened with Colombia, Germany, Niger, Norway and South Sudan, will take place February 16-17, 2023, in Geneva. 

On Twitter, please follow: @EduCannotWait, @YasmineSherif1, @KentPage

Additional information available at:

For press inquiries:
Anouk Desgroseilliers,, +1-917-640-6820
Kent Page,, +1-917-302-1735
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