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EU announces €25 million for education in crisis contexts and €140 million to support research in sustainable food systems

Speaking at the Global Citizen Live event, President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announced that the European Union is pledging €140 million to support research in sustainable food systems and tackle food hunger via CGIAR, formerly also known as Consultative Group for International Agricultural Research, and a further €25 million for Education Cannot Wait, a global fund for the education of children in emergencies and protracted crises, in particular girls, children with disabilities, minorities and other marginalized children.

Ursula von der Leyen, President of the European Commission, recently said:

We must join forces to beat the coronavirus and rebuild the world better. Europe is doing its share. From the beginning, Europeans have shipped 800 million doses of vaccines with the world, even when we did not have enough for ourselves. Now, we need to step up, to help end this pandemic globally, end hunger, give children all over the world equal chances. Team Europe has already committed to donate 500 million doses of vaccines to vulnerable countries by next summer. On top, the European Commission today commits €140 million to improve global food security and reduce extreme poverty, and €25 million to Education Cannot Wait, supporting education for children around the world living through conflict and crisis.”

Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen recently said:

"We must unite to put the SDGs back on track. As we continue to witness, we can never take access to education for granted. Team Europe has to date contributed to more than 40% of the funding of Education Cannot Wait, and the new €25 million contribution from the EU will further support it to reach the most vulnerable children and bring them back to education. Additionally, thanks to our substantial support of €140 million to CGIAR, we will be creating opportunities for youth and women, while tackling a key challenge of today, to promote sustainable food systems. Coordinated global actions will be decisive for achieving an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable transformation of food systems.”

Supporting education for children living through conflict and crisis

The EU will contribute an additional €25 million to Education Cannot Wait (ECW) to support the right of even the most vulnerable children to a safe, quality education and leave no one behind. The new funding brings the total EU contribution to Education Cannot Wait to €52.5 million, accelerating its impact, scope and reach across the globe.

Quality education is a fundamental human right and plays a key role as an accelerator of progress on all Sustainable Development Goals. However, during the pandemic, 1.6 billion children were out of school globally, and millions may never return to learning. The world risks reversing decades of progress.

Education Cannot Wait is a global fund for the education of children in emergencies and protracted crises that enables governments, multilateral institutions and the private sector to finance comprehensive education programmes for crisis-affected children and youth. It was designed to be agile and to reach the most vulnerable, excluded and hard-to-reach, including girls, children with disabilities, minorities and other marginalized children.

Since its establishment in 2016, the fund has helped over 4.6 million vulnerable girls and boys living in fragile situations and crisis contexts to access inclusive, quality education in a safe and protective environment. The fund's COVID-19 education in emergency response has provided distance learning, life-saving health messages and other support to an additional 29.2 million vulnerable girls and boys.

Click here for the full press release


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