Reason #3: The Global Partnership for Education Complements Bilateral Efforts in Global Education

Over the next eight weeks, RESULTS affiliates in the U.K., Australia, Canada, and the U.S. will delve deeper into 8 key reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever. You can read the blog about Reason #1, by RESULTS Australia’s Camilla Ryberg, here and blog about Reason #2, by RESULTS UK’s Dan Jones, here. In this weeks blog from Alison Grossman from RESULTS US,  we explore reason #3, which looks at how donor government contributions to the Global Partnership for Education have the power to complement their bilateral efforts in global education.

Enhancing Donor’s Own Education Objectives

From focused, specific goals in the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Education Strategy (100 million children in primary grades by 2015 and increased equitable access to education in crisis and conflict environments for 15 million learners by 2015) to the three pillars of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s education thematic strategy (access to basic education for all, improved learning outcomes, and better governance and service delivery), each of our governments have their own programmatic objectives for their bilateral basic education programs.

But how are each of these donor country objectives addressed within the Global Partnership for Education?

The Global Partnership has its own set of strategic goals on access, learning, reaching every child, and building the future – goals that are widely seen as global priorities that we must address in order to truly achieve education for all. They then operationalized these goals through five specific strategic objectives: supporting education in fragile and conflict-affected states, promoting girls’ education, increasing basic numeracy and literacy skills, improving teacher effectiveness, and expanding aligned funding and support for education.

Reason_3When looking at the bilateral objectives of Australia, Canada, the UK, and the US, there is clear alignment – GPE’s objectives enhance the specific goals of each of our countries, and do so through a partnership with a broad set of members all contributing together to support these efforts. As the report notes, the Australian government rated the Global Partnership as “very high” when looking at alignment with national interests and priorities – can’t get much better than that!

Extending the Reach of Bilateral Education Programs

In addition to enhancing donors’ own global education objectives, investments by Australia, Canada, the UK, and the US in the Global Partnership for Education extend the reach of our governments, getting to countries and issues not covered in our own goals and objectives.

For instance, the Global Partnership for Education’s support for early childhood development programs in Moldova is outside of the USAID Education Strategy, but addresses the needs of Moldova and the context of their system –allowing the US to positively impact children in Moldova in a way they never would have been able to do without the Global Partnership.

The same is true geographically. As the report points out, DFID in the UK noted that by 2015, it and the Global Partnership for Education will be supporting nine of the 12 countries with the world’s highest populations of out-of-school children. Of these, DFID will be reaching four of them solely through its contributions to the Global Partnership for Education.

With 59 developing country partners currently, and more if the June pledging conference is successful, the Global Partnership’s geographic reach combined with their focus on national needs and priorities allows donor countries to extend their reach and impact in a way they are not able to do alone.

Building Goverment Capacity to Partner with Bilateral Institutions

Beyond specific education objectives, the Global Partnership for Education’s systems approach actively seeks to strengthen the ability of their developing country partners to deliver education services to their own people. By working with governments and civil society to develop and implement national education plans, the Global Partnership is taking a long-term approach to building strong national education systems that countries will need to sustainably educate children well into the future.

Not only is this the most effective approach to education development, but it also fills in a gap that donors are seeking. USAID, for instance, has agency-wide goals to channel more of its funding directly through effective local institutions, including government-to-government assistance and local organizations. But at the moment, USAID invests an extremely low percentage of its education funds through partner country governments or local institutions, especially when looking at investments in sub-Saharan Africa and in comparison with other sectors (for specifics and more information on these investments, see our November 2013 discussion paper on USAID Forward).

Clearly USAID and other donors want to invest directly in government systems and local institutions – and the Global Partnership’s approach is building the partners they’re seeking. Donor governments need to benefit from GPE’s comparative advantage in this area and can do so by more greatly support GPE’s efforts to foster environments with strong national systems capable of effective, independent delivery of quality, essential education services.

Supporting Civil Society to Make Goverments Accountable

The Global Partnership for Education doesn’t stop with strengthening developing country governments, though. It also has a separate fund to support the development of civil society organizations and coalitions across 45 developing countries, called the Civil Society Education Fund. Donors are looking for effective local institutions with which to partner on the delivery of services. By supporting the Global Partnership for Education, donors will allow the Global Partnership to utilize its comparative advantage in working with these coalitions across the world to strengthen their capacity, eventually allowing them to partner directly with donors.

Further, this support also builds the accountability and oversight capacities necessary to ensure that developing country governments are using their education dollars effectively. Organizations like the Elimu Yetu Coalition in Kenya exemplify how civil society organizations can positively influence the education systems in their countries when supported by the Global Partnership. Just as we advocate to our governments to direct resources to the most effective programs and to improve their policies for the poorest and most vulnerable, we need advocates around the world watching their governments and ensuring that donor and developing country funds are going to implement national plans and are having the impact needed for their children’s education.

As Australian, Canadian, UK, and US governments consider their roles in the Global Partnership for Education’s replenishment campaign, the role that GPE can play in moving ahead their own education and development objectives is a key consideration. But strong commitments from our governments that help reach the $3.5 billion replenishment target are necessary to ensuring the Global Partnership and our own governments can fulfill our collective goals for children around the world.

Click here to read the full RESULTS report Greater Impact Through Partnership: 8 Reasons to Invest in the Global Partnership for Education Now More Than Ever.

Don’t forget to check back next week for Reason #4!

Join our webinar on exciting new nutrition campaign

When: Tuesday 15th April, 7pm

Link: http://momentum.adobeconnect.com/aprilwebinar/
Phone number to dial: 0800 22 90 900
Participant code: 18723

We are currently in the process of developing a major new campaign for public action in the UK which will focus on the issue of acute malnutrition around the world. After the UK Government made such strong commitments to tackling this problem at the Nutrition for Growth event on June 8th last year, momentum on tackling this problem -which leads to millions of preventable child deaths each year- has slowed.

We want to kick start it and this campaign is intended to do just that.

You can read the agenda here.

Working with partners from across the UK and from around the world. Join us on this webinar to learn all the about the issue and the campaign.

To join, simply follow the link above. When you are connected on your computer, dial into the meeting using the number and code above.

If you have any questions or queries about using the software, please drop me a note.

We look forward to you joining us.

World Health Worker Week: no health without health workers

To mark World Health Workers Week, Jessica Kuehne, health advocacy officer at RESULTS, discusses the critical role health workers play in delivering healthcare around the world.

ResultsUK140220-7705How many times have you come into contact with a health worker in the last year? If you’re like me, this would amount to multiple times – I see an optometrist to get my eyes checked, I went to the dentist when I had a tooth ache, I made multiple visits to my local GP when I tore my calf muscle playing volleyball. If you’re like my friend, who avoids doctors at all costs, you may not see a health worker of any kind regularly, but even he eventually needed the help of doctors and nurses when he developed tonsillitis and had to be admitted to A&E.

It’s easy to forget that our health system has health workers who immunise us against serious childhood illnesses, that we have midwives who safely deliver babies to the benefit of both mother and child, and that we have doctors and surgeons who can provide emergency care when needed. Yet 57 countries around the world are facing a severe human resources for health crisis and 83 countries don’t have enough health workers to provide even basic health services:

  • The world is short 7.2 million health workers needed in order to provide essential health services.
  • Africa has 11 percent of the world’s population but makes up a quarter of the global disease burden. At the same time, it has just 3 percent of the global health workforce.
  • 51 percent of births in Africa 41 percent of births in Asia are not attended by a midwife or other trained health worker.
  • Eleven countries in Sub-Saharan African do not have any medical schools, and a further 24 countries only have one.

A country example of how this plays out:

DSCN4799Ethiopia is a country with a population of over 90 million. It has just over 2,000 physicians and fewer than 3,000 nurses.  In contrast the UK, with a population of roughly 60 million, has over 170,000 physicians and nearly 600,000 nurses.

The UK has a nurse to patient ratio of 1:8. In contrast, India needs another 2.4 million nurses just to reach a nurse to patient ratio of 1:500.

All of the health issues that RESULTS works on – tuberculosis, child survival and nutrition – depend on having trained, supported, employed and motivated health workers who can provide health services. Health workers are essential to vaccinating children to give them life-long protection against disease, they are vital to diagnosing people with TB and supporting them during their long and arduous treatment, and they are crucial to providing care to acutely malnourished children.

This week, let’s celebrate the critical role health workers play in delivering healthcare, and let’s take this opportunity to call on the UK Government to help developing countries scale up their health spending and use these funds to strengthen its health workforce. Because there can be no health without health workers.

Some health worker highlights:

Press release: RESULTS UK welcomes International Development Committee report on disability

RESULTS UK warmly welcomes the International Development Select Committee’s report released today which calls on the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) to urgently step up its work on disability, or risk failing the world’s poorest people.

RESULTS’ Executive Director Aaron Oxley said, “We and our grassroots advocates from across the UK have campaigned passionately for years to see UK aid better supporting education for children with disabilities. We’ve worked with coalitions of other charities, with many of Team GB’s amazing Paralympians, and with Parliamentarians. The International Development Committee is absolutely right to urge DFID to build on Minister Lynne Featherstone MP’s recent commitments and ensure that disabled people become a clear and sustained priority for UK aid”.

Disability has been neglected for far too long as a “niche” area of development. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) failed to mention disability, yet disabled people make up an estimated 15% of the global population. 80% of disabled people live in developing countries and the UN calls them “the world’s largest minority.

Without including disabled people, many of the MDG targets will not be reached. Progress towards MDG 2 (universal primary education), for example, has all but stalled, with 57 million children worldwide out of school and a global learning crisis with 250 million children failing to learn even the basics . Estimates suggest that children with disabilities are more likely to be out of school than any other group of children.

RESULTS UK urges DFID to heed the recommendations of the International Development Select Committee’s report. DFID should lead by example by putting in place a strong disability strategy supported by a larger team with a senior sponsor and strong reporting processes to ensure accountability. DFID should pledge to make all UK aid programmes accessible to disabled people, and begin immediately to implement that pledge in a sensible, phased way.

The IDSC report highlights the important role that Prime Minister David Cameron has played in the debate about the future of development as co-chair of the UN High Level Panel on Post-2015. The Prime Minister has championed the High Level Panel’s call for a development agenda that “leaves no-one behind” and prioritising disabled people clearly fits with that agenda.

Mr Oxley echoed the Prime Minister’s focus on the most marginalised, saying, “Acting now to prioritise education for children with disabilities, and other marginalised groups, will ensure that UK aid and UK taxpayers help secure a world of prosperity for all that leaves no-one behind.”

Figures released last week showed that the UK Government had fulfilled their commitment to meet the international target of spending 0.7% of Gross National Income on overseas aid . The UK is also currently the largest bilateral donor to basic education. The IDSC report emphasises the importance of DFID promoting attention to the needs of disabled people via its role as a leading contributor to UN and other international agencies.

Mr Oxley said “I am very proud that our Government is a world leader in development. DFID’s work is delivering important progress and changing millions of lives. On disability, the IDSC is right that DFID can play a crucial role by leading by example and by working closely with international partners, such as the Global Partnership for Education, to ensure all children, regardless of disability or other circumstance, can achieve a quality education”.

REASON #2 to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now: THE GPE REACHES THOSE IN THE GREATEST NEED

Over the next eight weeks, RESULTS affiliates in the UK, Australia, Canada and the U.S. will delve deeper into 8 key reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever. This second post is by Dan Jones, Campaigns Manager at RESULTS UK. You can read the blog about Reason #1, by RESULTS Australia’s Camilla Ryberg, here.

 

“Everyone has the right to education” 

– Article 26, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

 

This week, we look more closely into Reason #2 of the eight reasons from our joint RESULTS report “Greater Impact through Partnership: 8 reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever”.

Reason #2

This reason is close to the hearts of everyone who campaigns with RESULTS around the world, because it is about reaching the most marginalised and vulnerable people in our world.

Education is fundamental to ending poverty and to tackling the inequalities that leave some children behind, unable to fulfil their right to education. Put simply, the world cannot achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) without ensuring education for all, including the most marginalised people.

Dramatic progress has been made in expanding access to primary education. For example, since 1999 the number of children out of school around the world has fallen almost by half. We should be proud of the part our Governments, as major donors to education, have played in that. Yet despite progress, 57 million children of primary age remain out of school around the world. The UN recently reported that 250 million children are failing to learn even the basics of reading and writing – a “global learning crisis”.

It is clear that marginalised children, particularly girls, those living in conflict-affected and fragile states, and children with disabilities, make up a very large proportion of the children either out of school or receiving such poor quality education that they are unable to learn.

The Global Partnership for Education specifically prioritises these children and aims to support them to receive a quality basic education. Nearly three-quarters of the world’s 57 million primary-school-aged children who are out of school live in GPE’s partner developing countries. Of the 250 million children estimated by UNESCO to either not be reaching grade 4 or reaching grade 4 without mastering minimum levels of learning, 100 million (40%) of them are in GPE countries.

Continue reading

One week to go (*gulp*) – Please support!

Dan Jones, our Campaigns Manager, on the final weeks of training for the London Marathon. Dan is running for RESULTS UK, and you can support him here

London Marathon programme

The London Marathon final programme lands on my doorstep – no going back now.

It’s official – there’s only one week left before I’ll be (without any doubt whatsoever) out-pacing Mo Farah, Wilson Kipsang, Geoffrey Mutai et al as I triumph over the 26.2 miles of the London Marathon, in support of RESULTS UK. And I’m definitely feeling *The Fear*.

Training has been hard. The lowest point was at about 7am one Saturday morning, when after a long week at work I woke, put on my trainers and prepared for my longest training run of 22 miles. It took me just under four hours which, frankly, is just a ridiculous amount of time to spend running.

It has to be said though that as I’ve trained for my second ever marathon, it’s been a lot better than last time around. Two years ago, I was training for the Kilimanjaro marathon in Tanzania. At the time, I was living in Nairobi, Kenya where training runs were particularly challenging for a number of reasons. Firstly, we had to get up at about 6am in order to finish training runs before it got too hot (not really a problem in old blighty). Then, there was the lack of pavements and crazy traffic in Nairobi. I became adept at leaping pot holes, dodging through unpredictable traffic jams and purple exhaust fumes.  On one occasion, I took a wrong  turn through a slum, much to the bemusement of onlookers.Yeah, not really the same as running on the suburban streets of Hertfordshire. And then of course there was the fact that the marathon itself was mainly uphill – the clue, I suppose, was in the title. At least this time I know it’s fairly flat.

Dan running in Berkhamsted Half Marathon

Feeling the pain during the recent Berkhamsted Half Marathon (just a “light” training run)

Last time around, I was raising money for a small Kenyan NGO Special Education Professionals that I worked with in Nairobi, who brought together disability specialists including special needs teachers, speech and language therapists and occupational therapists to support children with disabilities and their parents in low income areas like the informal settlements.

This time, I’m raising money for RESULTS! But it’s great to feel that our work is still changing the lives of those same marginalised children. As a concrete example, I’ve been proud to be part of RESULTS’ campaigning to strengthen the focus of UK aid on supporting education for children with disabilities. We have been campaigning literally for years on this issue. Our amazing network of grassroots advocates have written to their MPs, been to Parliament and engaged Team GB’s famous Paralympians on this issue. We’ve worked with hundreds of other organisations, organised events for MPs, gained media coverage and submitted evidence to a Parliamentary inquiry. It can sometimes be hard to see the tangible results that RESULTS achieves, but on this issue, we have seen huge progress. Last year DFID Minister Lynne Featherstone MP announced new commitments including that all new schools built with direct UK support in developing countries would be built accessible to children with disabilities. She then visited Uganda with Paralympian and broadcaster Ade Adepitan to raise the profile of the issue further. Later this week, Parliament’s inquiry on disability and development will publish its report and we sincerely hope that that will go further and include strong recommendations for DFID to do more to ensure UK aid is inclusive of people with disabilities.

That’s an example of our impact that I’m particularly proud of, but I could just as easily have talked about our role in securing millions of pounds for life-saving global programmes to find and treat tuberculosis or to tackle under-nutrition in developing countries, or our current advocacy to ensure a successful replenishment of the Global Partnership for Education, which will deliver a quality education for millions of children.

So I’m feeling proud to be running the London Marathon for RESULTS. With one week to go, I’m excited, nervous, fairly injury-free and, well, terrified. But that’s normal isn’t it?!

Please support this crazy endeavour and help me reach my fundraising target of £1,000 for RESULTS UK. You can donate online at http://www.everyclick.com/danrunslondon.

(also, if anyone is in London for the marathon on Sunday, do cheer me on – I’ll be grimacing and wearing a RESULTS T-shirt)

Photo story: Finding TB cases in Cambodia’s Slums

The World Health Organisation estimates that of the nearly nine million people who become ill with tuberculosis every year, nearly one third are ‘missed’ by national health systems. This means that roughly one out of every three individuals with TB is never officially diagnosed or treated and continues to spread, suffer, and die from the disease.

In Steung Meanchey, Cambodia, a new programme, supported by TB REACH, has been introduced to help find people in slums who have symptoms of TB, but have never received a formal diagnosis. TB REACH is a an initiative of the Stop TB Partnership that seeks to use innovative and forward thinking techniques for finding and diagnosing cases of TB in hard to reach populations.

Steung Meanchey is a poor community on the outskirts on Phnom Penh that sits directly above a sewage lake and has high rates of TB due to overcrowded living conditions and poor nutrition. Many families in the community do not have access to health services or are unaware that symptoms such as a cough or weight loss could actually be the early stages of TB.  To address this problem, the programme sends health workers to visit families to see if any individuals have symptoms of TB. If they have symptoms, health workers collect a sputum sample from the individual, place it in a cool box and then transport it back to the lab for testing. If the person turns out to have TB, they are provided treatment free of charge, in their home, until they recover.

While the approach of actively finding people in Cambodia who have TB may not sound ground-breaking, it is this sort of alternative approach that has helped the country make inroads against one of the world’s most deadly infectious diseases. Bringing health services to those who might otherwise have difficulty accessing them is helping to ensure people are diagnosed sooner and put on treatment faster, thus stopping the disease from being spread further in the community.

National Conference speakers annouced!

We are pleased to announce four of the speakers who will be joining us for our annual National Conference over the weekend of the 10th-12th of May 2014.

With an exciting range of speakers already confirmed, this year’s conference is shaping up to be one of our most exciting conferences to date!  To find out more about them, have a read of their bios below.

 Speaker Biographies

 Ben Taylor

Ben TwazeaBen Taylor is an analyst and activist, working on open government and citizens’ engagement. He works as Open Development Consultant for Twaweza, an East African NGO that creates opportunities for citizens to make change happen in their own communities directly and by holding government to account. Prior to this, Ben spent 12 years working for various civil society organisations in Tanzania, including WaterAid and Daraja.  Drawing on his expereince working with grassroots movement Twaweza in East Africa, Ben will be speaking in the weekends first session: Doing it for themselves: national and grassroots development successes that are breaking the mould.

Nick Dearden

contributor-nick dearden

Nick Dearden is the  director of the World Development Movement, a not-for-profit organisation campaigning against the root causes of poverty and inequality. Nick started his career at War on Want where he became a senior campaigner. He went on to be corporates campaign manager at Amnesty International UK. As director of the Jubilee Debt Campaign, he built strong relationships with campaigners in the global south. He helped win a new law to stop Vulture Funds from using UK courts to squeeze huge debt payments out of poor countries. Nick will be speaking in the weekends contested debate: The unseen hand of progress? Does the private sector hold the key to development in the 21st century?

Daniel Ben-Ami

indexDaniel Ben-Ami  has worked as a writer for over 25 years, during which time he has contributed to numerous national, specialist and international publications. Ferraris For All, his book defending economic progress, was first published in 2010 and an extended edition was published in 2012. His book on global finance, Cowardly Capitalism, was recommended by the Baker Library of Harvard Business School. Ben-Ami will be joining Nick to debate the private sectors role in development

Andrew Felton

AndrewFeltonAndrew Felton is currently the Senior External Affairs Counsellor at The World Bank.  Prior to becoming the Senior External Counsellor at the World Bank, Felton worked with DeDepartment for International Development as a Policy Analyst, and Head of Cabinet. He also spent time working with DFID in both Tanzania and Sierra Leone. Felton received his MSc in Rural Resource Management: Tropical from the University of Wales, Bangor. Andrew will be presenting the Banks vision of a world without poverty in the days final session: Is zero possible? Fulfilling the World Bank’s ambition of ending poverty by 2030.

For more information about the conference check out the National Conference webpage or click here to download a booking form.

 

 

 

 

 

“The most valuable right that will prevent conflict and help a country grow is education” RESULTS April Conference Call

Education for blogpost

On the evening of the 2nd of April, RESULTS held a conference call as a part of April’s monthly action. This months action is to ensure the GPE secures full replenishment for the upcoming 2015-2018 calendar years. April’s action calls on advocates to write to their local MP and ask them to contact Justine Greening MP, Secretary of State for International Development, calling on her to make an early pledge of £525 million to the GPE, securing 25% of its total funding. The UK has been a crucial player in global education as the largest donor to education for a number of years, pledging 25% of GPE’s total funding in the past. An ambitious pledge from the UK government to the GPE will inspire other donors and can change the lives and give opportunities to millions of children around the globe.

This month’s conference call features speaker Chernor Bah, a lead youth advocate for Global Education and girl’s education as well as a former refugee from Sierra Leone. He is a Youth Engagement Coordinator for A World at School and serves as the youth representative on the High-Level Steering committee for the UN Secretary General’s Global Education First Initiative and as Chair of the Youth Advocacy Group. Chernor is an advocate for the education rights of children affected by emergencies. Chernor is also the leader and founder of Sierra Leone’s children parliament, the Children’s Forum Network. Since founding the Children’s forum Network, Chernor has worked with youth in emergency settings leading efforts to shape their voices in development and policy processes. By providing mentorship, tools, and support, Chernor mobilizes the youth and gets them involved in policy discussion. He has committed his life to education declaring it “the most valuable right that will prevent conflict and help a country grow.” Chernor holds a MA in Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame and a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Sierra Leone.

Recently the GPE has focused on children who receive the lowest quality of education: girls, disabled children, and those from conflict effected countries. War has had a long lasting negative impact on Sierra Leone and its education system. Leading up to the war 70-80% of school aged children were not in school. Following the war, the already inadequate school buildings were destroyed, leaving nowhere for children to gather to learn. This has resulted in an overall poor quality of education for the children of Sierra Leone. In the past the GPE has helped Sierra Leone and other African States. Globally, education is grossly underfunded; the current challenge in education is mainly lack of financing. Teachers trained in Sierra Leone often leave the country in times of conflict, leaving the children without guidance. On the call, Chernor suggested that the solution to this problem is for the GPE to put in and fund a proposal to incentivise teachers to stay. Keeping the teachers happy and in the country is the key to providing education to the youth.

Chernor praises the GPE as a partnership that encourages coordination across different sectors. It is essential to coordinate all partners that have an impact on education in a country to produce a national education plan. This is a global challenge that the GPE has proven to be a leader in, providing a partnership model for coordinating all partners behind a nationally lead education plan. Dan Jones of RESULTS UK spoke of the GPE, DFID, the Tanzanian ministry of education, the Swedish aid agency, and representatives from civil society in Tanzania working together to improve education in Tanzania.

The benefits of education are endless. For every year a woman spends in school, it increases her lifespan and improves her health and overall livelihood.  Chernor maintains that “we cannot tackle poverty or any of the big issues we have around the world if we don’t have education.” Education is truly priceless as it prepares an individual for life. With the UK as a strong partner with GPE the Education for All campaign will be a success. Click here to download the call.

 

 

REASON #1 to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now: WE CANNOT END POVERTY WITHOUT INVESTING IN EDUCATION

Over the next eight weeks, RESULTS affiliates in Canada, the UK, the U.S. and  Australia will delve deeper into  8 key reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever. This first post from Camilla Ryberg, RESULTS Australia’s Education Manager, looks at why we cannot end poverty without investing in education.

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” ― Nelson Mandela

Today we look a bit more closely into Reason #1 of the eight reasons from our joint RESULTS brief Greater Impact through Partnership: 8 reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever.

Reason-#1-blog

The reason; ‘We cannot end poverty without investing in education’, is really one on which there is little or no disagreement.  Indeed, it is often stated that investing in education is the single most effective way of reducing poverty.

This is recognised by citizens all over the world as evidenced in the United Nations’ MY World global survey  – with responses from nearly 1.5 million people in 194 countries at the time of writing – where “A good education” is ranked as the world’s #1 priority for the post-2015 development agenda.

It is estimated that if all students in low income countries left school with basic reading skills, 171 million people could be lifted out of poverty and global poverty would decline by 12 percent. Education is critical to reducing poverty and inequality, and one of the most important investments a country can make in its people and its future.

The Global Partnership for Education (GPE) provides low-income country partners the incentives, resources, and technical support to build and implement robust education plans and meet targets to help more children receive a good quality education.

Sometimes education challenges require innovative approaches that reach beyond the education sector. The school meals program in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR) supported by the Global Partnership for Education is such an example. With the Government of Lao PDR having identified the importance of education, food security, and health in breaking the cycle of intergenerational poverty, a GPE grant of US$30 million went towards the program that combined local food production, community trainings, and school interventions in health, sanitation, and hygiene. The program was piloted by the Ministry of Education and Sports in 66 schools in 2012, with plans to expand it to nine districts in five provinces.

Education is intrinsically related to other poverty alleviation aspects, such as maternal and child health, gender equality, economic development, national security, and democracy. In Greater Impact through Partnership we outline five areas where education has significant impact.

The multiplier effect of education – Education is a human right and is absolutely fundamental to ending poverty. A good education empowers individuals, contributes to greater economic growth, produces healthier populations, and builds more stable, equitable societies. Education is widely recognized as one of the most effective development interventions. If the world does not invest in education, development and progress will be impossible.

Maternal and child health – A child born to an educated mother is more than twice as likely to survive to the age of five. As women’s education levels increase, immunization rates go up, preventable child deaths go down, and nutrition improves.

Gender equality - Education increases self-confidence and decision-making power for girls, as well as their economic potential. On average, for a girl in poor country, each additional year of education beyond third or fourth grade will lead to 20 percent higher wages.

Economic development – Education is a prerequisite for economic growth: no country has achieved continuous and rapid growth without at least 40 percent of adults being able to read and write. Every US$1 invested in a person’s education yields US$10-15 in economic benefit over that person’s working lifetime.

Security and democracy – People of voting age with a primary education are 1.5 times more likely to support democracy than people with no education. Countries with higher primary schooling rates and a smaller gap between rates of boys’ and girls’ schooling tend to enjoy greater democracy and stability.

Without investing in education, the poorest countries and the poorest people will be left far behind. Conversely, as outlined above, the impact of investment in education is profound.  We cannot end poverty without investing in education and a successful replenishment which sees a fully-funded Global Partnership for Education is critical to achieving this.

RESULTS affiliates in Canada, the United Kingdom, the United States and here in Australia are calling on our respective governments to play their fullest part in ensuring that the Global Partnership for Education’s 2015-2018 replenishment target of US$3.5 billion is met.

Click here to read the full RESULTS’ brief Greater Impact through Partnership:  8 reasons to invest in the Global Partnership for Education now more than ever.

Don’t forget to check back here next week for REASON #2.