Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser and UNSG António Guterres Lead Global Advocacy as UN in Partnership with EAA Foundation Announces New Youth Advisory Group to Protect Education from Attack
The high-level event took place at the UN Headquarters in New York (ECOSOC Chamber), and included H.E. Mr António Guterres, UN Secretary-General; Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of EAA Foundation; H.E. Mr Julius Maada Wonie Bio, President of Sierra Leone; moderator Ms Melissa Fleming, UN Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications; UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Ms. Sofia Carson; Brother Peter Mokaya Tabichi, a Kenyan teacher and Global Teacher Prize Winner 2019; and Ms Diya Nijhowne, Executive Director of Global Coalition to Protect Education from Attack.
The UN in partnership with EAA Foundation announced a new Youth Advisory Group to Protect Education from Attack (YAGPEA). This diverse group of young people will advise the UN, global decision-makers to ensure that those directly impacted by attacks on education can influence policies and decisions designed to protect education in times of conflict and crisis. EAA Foundation will support these youth members to ensure that young people are at the heart of advocacy and action, and to provide young people around the world with a platform to raise their voices.
The participants shared insights that can strengthen justice for victims of attacks on education, and reflected on new data which this week revealed an unprecedented 17% increase in conflict-related attacks on schools and education centres in 2022.
Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser, Chairperson of EAA Foundation and UN SDG Advocate, said:
“The victims of conflict, whether in warzones or forced to be refugees, retain their human rights, and we must not forget them. We have a responsibility to ensure education, a fundamental human right, is accessible. Schools and universities should be places of learning and development. They should be places where dreams are realised, not destroyed. We must do all in our power to protect and prioritise education.”
Commemorating International Day to Protect Education From Attack, EAA Foundation today highlighted other exciting developments including the launch of a new Youth Empowerment System (“YES”) microsite, in partnership with OHCHR and Silatech; and an exhibition hosted at the UN Headquarters, "Unbreakable Dreams: Protecting Education in Times of Conflict" - bringing to life the experiences of survivors of attacks on education around the world. There are also events and exhibitions taking place around the world, including at the UN Palais des Nations in Geneva, across Doha, Qatar, and in conflict-affected communities.
Mrs Stefania Giannini, UNESCO Assistant Director- General:
”Young people often bear the burden of physical and psychological impacts of attacks on education. To make their voices heard and reflected in decision-making processes, UNESCO, together with the State of Qatar and Education Above All, are setting up a Youth Advisory Group. This initiative will provide young people from conflict and crisis-affected communities a global platform to share their suggestions for critical actions to protect education from attack.”
Sofia Carson American Actress-singer and UNICEF USA Goodwill ambassador ended the impactful day with a resounding call for action to global leaders, decision-makers and all stakeholders to keep the 244 million children globally who live in terror and fear for their lives within the halls of their schools in mind; she called upon everyone to unite and take a vow –Today we vow to protect the right to education.
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Education Above All
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