The United Nations Office for Children and Armed Conflict and UNESCO sign an agreement to strengthen cooperation on education for children living in conflict zones – World

International Day for the Protection of Education from Attack

New York, September 9 2022 – The Office of the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict and UNESCO today signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Joint Cooperation in Protecting and Pursuing Education in Conflict armed. The agreement, signed on the sidelines of the commemoration of the International Day for the Protection of Education from Attack, stresses in particular the importance of education in the context of reintegration programs for children formerly associated with armed forces or groups and the centrality of prevention. The agreement is further in accordance with the UN Security Council Resolutions 2427 (2018) and 2601 (2021) and help in their operationalization.

“The right to education is for all children, including those affected by conflict. This collaboration with UNESCO will enable the development of innovative projects for the benefit of children living in conflict zones, drawing on the technical expertise of both offices,” said the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Children. and Armed Conflicts, Ms. Virginia Gamba.

Specific collaborative projects will be implemented under this agreement such as the creation of accelerated education programs for children and young people receiving reintegration support, teacher training and the provision of capacity building on monitoring and reporting attacks on schools in situations of concern, among others.

In addition, in line with UN Security Council resolutions 2427 (2018) on prevention and 2601 (2021) exclusively devoted to the protection of education, this collaboration should make it possible to better link peace, security and education through prevention activities, strengthen prevention mechanisms and develop tools to better implement UN Security Council Resolution 2601 in terms of monitoring attacks on education.

“The number of attacks on schools, students and education personnel as well as the military use of schools continues to rise, with a devastating impact on children, especially girls. Ensuring that all children released from armed forces or groups have access to long-term, gender- and age-sensitive reintegration support, including education, is fundamental for their recovery, but also for the sustainable peace and development of their societies,” said Virginia Gamba. “We look forward to working with UNESCO on such a fundamental issue.”

The Analysis and Outreach Center of the SRSG CAAC Office in Doha, Qatar, will implement the MoU, in collaboration with UNESCO, including its regional office in Doha, and with the support of the Qatar Fund for Development. This year International Day for the Protection of Education from Attack precedes a series of upcoming initiatives related to the UN Transforming Education Summit later in September, convened by the Secretary General of the United Nations and supported by various partners, including the State of Qatar. The Summit proposes a course of action on education in crisis which the Office of the SRSG CAAC will continue to highlight and work with UNESCO and its partners from the high-level segment of the 77th session of the United Nations General Assembly.

The International Day for the Protection of Education from Attack, which takes place every year on September 9, was decided by the General Assembly in 2020 on the initiative of Her Highness Sheikha Moza of Qatar, President of Education first and advocate for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

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For more information, please contact:

Fabienne Vinet, Communications Officer, Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict

+1-212-963-5986 (office) / +1-917-288-5791 (mobile) / [email protected]

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