The people of South Sudan have one of the lowest literacy rates in the world (in 2010, only 27 percent of the adult population could read and write, according to South Sudan’s National Bureau of Statistics).
USAID’s education program in South Sudan focuses on rapidly reaching out-of-school children and improving the education system, with a focus on community involvement. Initiatives emphasize reaching marginalized populations, including children displaced by conflict, as well as foundational literacy skills, gender equity and conflict mitigation.
Educating Children and Youth in Crisis and Conflict Situations
USAID is partnering with UNICEF to provide emergency education to girls and boys in six states of South Sudan (Jonglei, Unity, Upper Nile, Lakes, Central and Eastern Equatoria) who fled their homes due to violence. The project will provide safe temporary learning spaces, teaching and learning materials, support accelerated learning for out-of-school adolescents and youth, train teachers in life skills, peacebuilding and psychosocial support, and disseminate information on self-protection and health.
In Yei, Central Equatoria state, South Sudanese non-governmental organization ACROSS is helping to build literacy for children with a USAID grant from the Grand Challenge for Development competition All Children Reading.
Through a partnership with Indiana University, USAID is working to advance South Sudanese women’s leadership in higher education. The project will bring 14 female South Sudanese scholars who represent a broad geographic and ethnic diversity to Indiana University to complete a Master's Degree program in education with a concentration on emergency education, trauma and healing, and the role of education in mitigating conflict. The project will also bring several faculty from South Sudanese universities to Indiana. The goal is to build an ethnically diverse group of faculty and female scholars equipped to assist South Sudan’s universities and education system to promote social cohesion, peace building and conflict mitigation, tapping into the newly emerging body of research and practice in the field of education in emergencies.
Last updated: June 17, 2014