Ireland to double its commitment to help educate vulnerable children

Some €25m in funding has been pledged to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE)

Ireland to double its commitment to help educate vulnerable children

Minster of State Ciaran Cannon (second right) speaking at the GPE conference in Dakar, Senegal | Image via @Irish_Aid on Twitter

The Government has pledged €25m to ensure the poorest and most vulnerable children receive a quality education.

The Minister of State for International Development, Ciarán Cannon, made the announcement at the GPE Financing Conference in Dakar, Senegal.

This will see Ireland more than double its funding to the Global Partnership for Education (GPE).

The €25m in funding will go out over the next three years.

The Government says this is a reflection of its “confidence in the partnership’s capacity to deliver quality education for children most in need.”

Speaking in Dakar, Minister Cannon said: "Ireland believes that quality education is a fundamental right.

"The education of girls, in particular, has far reaching effects on family health, nutrition and empowers girls to prioritise the education of their children.

"As a former Minister at the Department of Education and Skills, I am acutely conscious of the importance of quality learning.

"Education must be about equipping children and young people with the skills that they need to lead healthy, productive, and meaningful lives."

 264 million children out of school

Plan International Ireland has welcomed the increase in aid.

In a statement it says: "We commend Irish Aid’s commitment to step up and fund education and ensure all children, especially those often left behind, have the opportunity to learn.

"Plan Ireland specifically has been calling on the Irish Government to increase its annual contribution substantially to the GPE from the current level of €4m per annum. Today's announcement means this will be €8m per annum."

It says 264 million children globally are presently out of school. while 617 million children and adolescents are not achieving minimum proficiency levels in reading and maths.

The Global Partnership for Education is seeking to raise USUS$3.1bn for 2018 to 2020 to support up to 89 developing countries and drive improved quality and access to education for 870 million children and youth.