In April 2016, Educate A Child partnered with United World Schools (UWS), under the auspices of the multi-country initiative the ‘South East Asia School Development Project for Out of School Children’, to reach primary-age school children missing out on their education. Together Educate A Child and UWS aim to enrol more than 33,000 out of school children (OOSC), train teachers and build schools. The project is active in Cambodia, Myanmar and Nepal.
Regarding Nepal, low levels of government investment, mismanagement, teacher absenteeism, and the high-cost of school fees, plague the country’s education system. In addition, a magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck Nepal in April 2015, claiming lives of approximately 9,000 people and wreaking havoc on its infrastructure. Some sources indicate that almost a quarter of the population had been affected and of that total one million were children. Unquestionably, the road to recovery and reconstruction was going to be a long journey. That is why Educate A Child is pleased to announce the opening of the new UWS Mude School in Province No. 1’s Sankhuwasabha District. The new school, the first from the partnership with UWS, was formally inaugurated by the former Prime Minister of Nepal, the Hon. Madhav Kumar, on 29 April 2016. Prior to the earthquake, access to education in Sankhuwasabha was limited and in its aftermath roughly 15,000 children were either completely shut out or attending temporary learning centres. However, the new school has the capacity to accommodate 200 students and UWS has more school projects already underway in Sankhuwasabha to reach more than 10,000 OOSC in the span of just three years. Dr Mary Joy Pigozzi, Executive Director of Educate A Child, said, ‘The pace at which UWS has gone about building the infrastructure necessary to meet the education needs of school children in Nepal’s Province No. 1 is truly remarkable and we look forward to supporting their efforts’.
Educate A Child is invigorated by UWS’s progress and will continue its work to keep the promise of an education alive for Nepal’s OOSC.