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Education for women and girls

Student in a makeshift primary school for Syrian refugees in the Lebanon

Investment in girls’ education yields some of the highest returns of all development investments, yielding both private and social benefits that accrue to individuals, families, and society at large. Girls’ education affects all dimensions of development: lower mother and infant mortality rates, lower fertility rates, higher educational levels of daughters and sons, higher productivity and better treatment of the environment.
From a World Bank study

"Investment in girls’ education yields some of the highest returns of all development investments, yielding both private and social benefits that accrue to individuals, families, and society at large. Girls’ education affects all dimensions of development: lower mother and infant mortality rates, lower fertility rates, higher educational levels of daughters and sons, higher productivity and better treatment of the environment" (from a World Bank study).

Education is a fundamental human right and a necessary condition for successfully implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. The right of girls and young women to an education is set down in Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 4: "Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all."

Equal access to education and vocational training helps women to find a job outside of the home, earn their own income and improve their social status, which allows them to have political influence.

Since 1990, the gap between boys and girls in terms of education has been narrowing. Girls are, however, still discriminated more than boys when it comes to access to education. Fourteen per cent of adults worldwide can neither read nor write. Two thirds of these approximately 780 million people are women.

Educational and motivational campaigns

Vocational training in Kigali, Rwanda

There are diverse reasons for the continuation of gender-specific differences in education. They include the fact that girls are required to help in the home, a lack of female teachers and other female role models, early pregnancy and marriage, families’ fear of sexual harassment and violence, a long and dangerous route to school, or even the lack of separate sanitary facilities for girls in schools.

German development cooperation thus supports basic education and access to vocational training for girls and young women. Literacy and motivational campaigns are used to encourage women to make up for the basic education they missed out on and to get qualifications.

Detailed information about German activities in regard to education can be found here.

 


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