In an emergency, school provides the stability and routine that children need to cope with loss, fear, stress and violence. Going to school keeps children protected from sexual violence, free from recruitment into armed groups and forced labour, and it reduces the chance of an early marriage.
UNICEF provides School-in-a-Box kits during emergencies. These contain enough supplies and materials for teachers and up to 40 students, so teachers can quickly establish makeshift classrooms almost anywhere. The kit ensures children can keep going to school, even within the first 72 hours of an emergency.
For girls, one year at high school can mean increases in wages later in life by as much as 25 per cent. Education for women means choices, autonomy, and a chance to live independently.
In many parts of the world, girls still don't receive an education. When girls are prevented from going to school simply because they are girls, it sends the message that they are less valued.
Too few children are attending preschool programmes, and those that are tend to be from the richest 20 per cent of the population. Investing in early childhood education is a powerful way to reduce the disadvantages faced by children with low social and economic status.
A quality education equips girls and boys with the knowledge and skills they need to adopt healthy lifestyles, protect themselves and their communities from preventable diseases, and have a say in their own futures. We want that education to start from their earliest years.