Department for International Development
PM steps up UK effort to get every girl in the world into school
- Also published by:
- 10 Downing Street
Prime Minister Boris Johnson to announce £515m for education at the UN.
New UK funding to give millions of girls around the world the chance to go to school and get a quality education was yesterday announced by Boris Johnson.
Speaking at the UN General Assembly the Prime Minister yesterday announced £515 million to help get over 12 million children – half of them girls – into school, this will boost economic growth and improve women’s rights in some of the poorest countries in the world.
Supporting the empowerment of girls and women is a priority for the Prime Minister, who used his first speech on the steps of Downing Street to underline the pledge he made as Foreign Secretary that all girls should receive 12 years of quality education.
Globally 131 million girls do not go to school, with teenage girls and young women three times more likely than young men to be out of school or work. In Tanzania, one in three girls marry and become pregnant before the age of 18, and more than one in ten girls are victims of sexual violence on their way to school.
But girls’ education is a key driver determining a country’s economic success. A child whose mother can read is 50% more likely to live past the age of five and twice as likely to attend school herself, one additional school year can increase a woman’s earnings by 20%, and $28 trillion would be added to global GDP if women had the same role in the labour market as men.
The funding builds on the £90 million the Prime Minister committed at the G7 Summit last month for education in conflict areas.
At an event on education and the Sustainable Development Goals, the Prime Minister yesterday said:
Four years ago the world came together and agreed that every child has a right to an education and a fair chance in life. We enshrined that promise in the Sustainable Development Goals. Right now, we are breaking our promise to the world’s children, and to countless girls and young women who deserve better.
On current estimates it will take another eighty years to achieve the equality of opportunity we said we would deliver within fifteen. That means decades of girls who should be growing up to be doctors, teachers, entrepreneurs, and prime ministers having their dreams snatched away from them.
I want girls to achieve their potential. I want that for all girls, whether they were born in London, Lagos, Lima or Lahore. And I want the world to stop wilfully neglecting the enormous benefits that accrue for everyone when girls are given an education and a job.
UK funding will ensure even more girls can fulfil their potential by:
- teaching basic literacy and numeracy
- getting children living in conflict zones including the Sahel into school
- and mobilising an additional $5 billion of investment for education in Africa and Asia, with a focus on the most marginalised children
This new spending commitment will contribute to global efforts to meet a number of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals – in particular the goal of ensuring equal access for men and women to education.
International Development Secretary Alok Sharma yesterday said:
It is staggering that a child whose mother can read is 50% more likely to live past the age of five and twice as likely to attend school themselves.
If we educate girls today we will transform the world of tomorrow and ensure all future generations thrive. That is why the UK is increasing support to give every girl across the world the chance to go to school.
Latest News from
Department for International Development
UK aid to provide education and jobs to thousands of Syrian refugees14/10/2019 15:10:00
Minister for the Middle East, Dr Andrew Murrison MP, announces support during visit to Lebanon.
UK boosts trade and investment partnership with Ghana11/10/2019 12:10:00
International Development Minister Baroness Sugg visited Ghana last week to strengthen trade and investment ties ahead of UK-Africa Investment Summit in 2020.
UK aid backs private sector to fight malaria10/10/2019 15:28:00
New £100 million private sector funding to tackle malaria will be doubled by UK aid, to help stop six million cases of malaria and save 75,000 lives.
International Development Minister announces new UK aid to support 1.2 million people living in Cox’s Bazar10/10/2019 08:10:00
Baroness Sugg pledges new UK aid for Rohingya refugees and vulnerable Bangladeshi host families during a visit to the region.
UK aid partners with Gates Foundation to tackle global food insecurity09/10/2019 08:10:00
New funding to allow scientists to research cutting-edge technology to protect crops and produce “super crops” that will be more efficient and withstand the impacts of climate change.
UK aid-funded mine clearance success in Angola to be repeated in Zimbabwe07/10/2019 11:15:00
International Development Secretary Alok Sharma announces UK aid match support for demining charity The HALO Trust.
UK will step up efforts to end preventable deaths of mothers, new-born babies and children in the developing world by 203003/10/2019 08:10:00
UK aid will invest in more vaccines, prioritise access to healthcare for women and girls, and invest in research to diagnose and treat diseases.
UK aid to boost access to finance for sub-Saharan Africa27/09/2019 14:20:00
New UK aid package will help mobilise £500 million in private sector investment and create 50,000 jobs across sub-Saharan Africa.
Speech by Department for International Development Permanent Secretary Matthew Rycroft on impact investing to unlock more capital for the Sustainable Developments Goals (25 September 2019)26/09/2019 12:10:00
UK highlights role of private sector for meeting Global Goals at UN General Assembly side event in New York (25 September 2019).