The right to education is a human right. Education is indispensable for the development of the individual and the community. Help rebuilds schools that were destroyed in war or by natural disasters so that children can go back to school. Help also promotes vocational training to create long-term prospects.
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"My name is Halima and I am 15 years old. My family had to flee from Afghanistan because of the war. My parents did not find any work in Iran and we were not able to go to school. Now that the war is over, we are happy to be back. My parents are receiving occupational training thanks to Help and we can go to school again.
Lack of education has many reasons
Worldwide, more than 258 million school-age children and adolescents do not go to school. The majority of them live in Africa and in South and West Asia. There are many reasons for this: lack of infrastructure, poverty, displacement and social inequalities.
Girls and children with disabilities are particularly disadvantaged. Many schools are not equipped for the disabled and there is a lack of sanitary facilities. Many girls are therefore unable to go to school during their periods or have to risk infections, as they often do not have access to hygiene articles such as sanitary pads, tampons or menstrual cups.
Often children cannot go to school because they have to help their parents in the household or with field work during the day. Instead of reading, writing or doing arithmetic, they have to fetch water, cook or do the laundry so that the family can be adequately provided for. Here, too, girls are among the most disadvantaged children.
One of the most common reasons why so many children worldwide do not receive a school education is the lack of space for education. In rural regions, there are usually only a few schools, partly because the pay for teachers is significantly lower than in big cities. In addition, schools are destroyed time and again, for example by natural disasters or wars. In crisis situations, schools are often used as emergency accommodation for refugees, so that no lessons can take place.
Our projects in the education sector work on two levels: On the one hand, we enable children and young people to access education. We build or repair schools, build sanitary facilities and wells at schools and distribute blackboards, desks or school books, for example.
On the other hand, we promote the education of young adults: We run training centres where marketable professions are taught.
Education is the key to a better future and creates opportunities for work, income and an independent and self-determined life.
In the Democratic Republic of Congo, only a fraction of the population has access to electricity. Especially in rural areas, electricity is a rare resource. This limits many children in their learning: When they come home from school in the afternoon, they often have to help their parents with the housework or in the fields first.
To bring light into the darkness, Help distributes about 3,500 "Little Sun" solar lamps to six schools. In this way, we enable children and young people to learn and read even in the evening. The lamps are simply charged in the sun during the day and provide either 4 hours of bright light or up to 50 hours of soft light. The "little suns" have a lifespan of 5 years.
In Afghanistan, Help has been involved in the education sector for about 20 years: In our vocational schools, we train young women and men in marketable professions. After the training, they earn their own income as hairdressers or tailors, for example. We are currently training more than 3,250 young adults - including women, despite Taliban rule.
Our last study showed that about 65 percent of the trainees were employed or self-employed after graduation. In the very fragile labour market in Afghanistan, this is a great success and a step towards a better future.
Children and young people in South Sudan have hardly any access to education. Only one third of the population of the world's youngest state can read and write. This is partly due to the lack of infrastructure. This is also the case in the small town of Abang, where more than 500 children attend the Botoi primary school. Until recently, however, the school had only one classroom in a run-down building. Most of the lessons took place outside in front of the school building under a tree.
With the support of the fundraising campaign "beard4education" and a grant from the Fly & Help Foundation, Help built three new classrooms, a staff room and a latrine house. Now the children can learn in a safe environment and exercise their right to education.