This World Refugee Day, mobile technologies are filling educational gaps for millions of out-of-school Syrian children.
A refugee child and her grandmother play Antura and the Letters game, sourced through the EduApp4Syria prize competition. Photo credit: Norad.
This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, a manifesto created following the devastation of World War II that defined basic protections for all individuals and affirmed the dignity and worth of Humankind.
Two years ago, All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development, Pearson, and Project Literacy saw a key opportunity to serve the literacy needs of a major segment of the global population: the estimated 19 million children who are blind or have low vision and millions more with disabilities that impact their use of printed materials.
Children in India enjoy a smartphone app with self-paced audio storybooks in the Marathi language created by ACR Round 2 grantee, Sesame Workshop India Trust. Photo credit: Sesame Workshop India Trust.
In a small village in central India, 7-year-old Gouri sits beside her father, the light of a smartphone screen gently illuminating both of their faces.
Syrian refugee child playing winning EduApp4Syria game, Antura and the Letters, with her grandmother. Photo Credit: Norad.
With the seven-year-old Syrian conflict showing no signs of resolution, millions of affected children are at grave risk of becoming a “lost generation.” After long periods out-of-school during their formative years, many are facing a lifetime of significant societal challenges due to their lack of basic literacy skills, while also struggling with the long-term effects of trauma and chronic stress.
It was six years ago that All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development (ACR GCD) recognized both the challenge and opportunity for educating children in the language they speak and understand.
It was this challenge that motivated ACR GCD to do whatever possible to move the needle on statistics that showed 40 percent of the global population lacking access to education in their mother language.
Innovations seek to increase child literacy in developing countries
On October 5 we celebrate World Teachers’ Day to honor the critical contribution teachers make to education and development. This year we highlight pioneering teachers working hand-in-hand with All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development (ACR GCD) grantees to pilot innovations seeking to make breakthrough progress in child literacy.
You may not think of radio as cutting edge technology—but it’s playing an important role in an innovative project in rural Zambia that’s bringing together mobile phones, radio, and local knowledge to help children learn to read.
“Radio in rural Zambia is the most efficient and effective way to reach our target audience,” said Angela Musonda, coordinator for Creative Associates International’s innovative project.