Education Cannot Wait to Extend Multi-Year Resilience Programme in Colombia: Total Funding Tops US$28 Million

PR Newswire
Wednesday, March 29, 2023 at 11:00pm UTC

Education Cannot Wait to Extend Multi-Year Resilience Programme in Colombia: Total Funding Tops US$28 Million

PR Newswire

BOGOTÁ, Colombia, March 29, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Education Cannot Wait (ECW) Executive Director Yasmine Sherif announced today that ECW intends to expand its investments in Colombia. ECW's support to the current Multi-Year Resilience Programme exceeds US$12 million, and the Fund has allocated an additional US$12 million for the next three-year phase, which, once approved, will bring the overall investment in Colombia to over US$28 million

The catalytic grant funding supports the Government of Colombia's efforts to respond to the interconnected crises of conflict, forced displacement and climate change, and still provide a quality education.

"The National Government seeks to coordinate efforts among various sectors to strengthen actions to guarantee protection and care of Venezuelan families, especially children. Our greatest challenge for the effective integration of this population is to guarantee health, education and food sovereignty for all children, adolescents, and young people, with an emphasis on those in vulnerable conditions," said Aurora Vergara Figueroa, Minister of Education, Colombia. 

On a high-level mission to Colombia this week, Sherif called on world leaders to scale up the response to this crisis. An estimated US$46.4 million is required to fully fund the current multi-year resilience response. 

"The Government of Colombia has taken remarkable measures in providing refugees and migrants from Venezuela with access to life-saving essential services like education. By supporting these efforts across the humanitarian-development-peace nexus, we are creating the foundation to build a more peaceful and more prosperous future," said Sherif.

The Venezuela regional crisis has triggered the second largest refugee crisis in the world today. Colombia is host to 2.5 million Venezuelan refugees and migrants in need of international protection. The country also has 5.6 million internally displaced people. Recent analysis indicates that close to 70% of ten-year-olds cannot read or understand a simple text.

As of November 2022, over half a million Venezuelan children have been enrolled in Colombia's formal education system. ECW investments have reached 107,000 children to date.

"Education is the best engine for creating new life opportunities and personal growth. Thanks to the investment of ECW, we are achieving great changes in the education of thousands of girls and boys in Colombia," said Norwegian Refugee Council, Plan International, Save the Children, UNICEF and World Vision in a joint statement.

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SOURCE Education Cannot Wait