EU Children of Peace: Education for children in conflict

Save the Children’s latest project aimed at educating children in emergencies will see over 16,000 children gain access to basic education, many for the first time. It's funded by the European Union’s Children of Peace Initiative and will help thousands of children build their resilience to recover from the effects of a brutal conflict and cope with their lives ahead.

Education in Conflict

Today, there are over 28 million children out of school in countries affected by conflict and fragility.  

And these children regularly tell us is that what they want most is to go back to school.

Each and every child should have the opportunity to receive an education, develop their talents and grow up in peace. Ultimately, when a conflict breaks out it is the context that changes, not a child’s need for education. 

Education is crucial for both the protection and the development of children affected by conflict and by promoting education we can give children affected by conflict new hope for the future.

Education under attack in CAR

The ongoing conflict in Central African Republic has hit an already fragile education system. Before the current crisis, only 67% of primary school-aged children were enrolled in school, and less than 15% were in secondary education.

Today, one in five schools is closed due to the violence, some 40% have been attacked and children in many areas have missed as many as two academic years of school.

Now an entire generation is at risk of growing up illiterate, unable to fulfil their potential, or contribute to the development of the country.

Our work in CAR

Through the EU's Children of Peace initiative, Save the Children is supporting 27 schools in some of the worst affected areas of Central African Republic.

More than 16,000 highly vulnerable children affected by the violence are now able to access conflict-sensitive education in a healthy and protective learning environment.

We believe that schools are a perfect platform to respond to conflict-affected children's needs, ensuring their psychosocial and physical wellbeing while building their life skills to cope with the present and future effects of the conflict.

Schools are also the ideal entry point to promote a culture of peace in the conflict-affected communities we're targetting.

As well as ensuring thousands of children receive the education they need, the project is also training teachers and other community leaders and providing essential teaching materials such as books, stationery, learning materials and educational play materials.

EU Children of Peace

When the EU received the Nobel Prize for Peace in 2012, it decided to use the prize money to create a lasting legacy in the form of the EU Children for Peace initiative.

The initiative funds humanitarian projects for children in conflict-affected regions, providing them with access to schools where they can learn in a safe environment and receive psychological support to deal with their experiences. Through the EU Children of Peace initiative, the EU aims to turn "children of war" into "children of peace".

Since it began in 2013, some 270,000 boys and girls in 19 countries have benefited from the projects funded by the initiative.

For updates on the projects, follow #childrenofpeace on social media or visit the EU Children of Peace website.