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Thu 8 Nov 2018 12:11 PM

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World is failing children affected by emergencies: Dubai Cares CEO

Children affected by natural disasters number more than 75 million globally, according to Tariq al Gurg

World is failing children affected by emergencies: Dubai Cares CEO
Dubai Cares CEO, Tariq al Gurg.

Global contributions towards educating children and young affected by emergencies barely scratches the surface in terms of satisfying their needs, according to Dubai Cares CEO, Tariq al Gurg.

Al Gurg was speaking with Arabian Business in an interview when he disclosed the extent of the struggle donors and aid agencies are contending with in a bid to educate the world’s disadvantaged.

“The portion of global humanitarian aid that goes toward educating children is roughly one percent. And the portion of that going towards educating children in emergency contexts is at most two percent,” he said.

“I can only tell you that we need to do more, because what is being done right now globally isn’t working.”

Roughly 1 billion children in the work are either unable to attend school or cannot adequately read or write despite attending school, according to Dubai Cares. Over 75 million children in the world are affected by emergencies, defined as conflict, epidemics or natural disasters.

“When an earthquake strikes, for instance, the first concerns are food, shelter, and relief. Education becomes an afterthought,” Al Gurg said.

Founded in 2007 with a $960 million endowment as part of the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Initiatives, Dubai Cares is an Emirati non-governmental organisation with a mission to “improve the quality of life of children in developing countries by improving access to and imparting quality education.”

Since 2016, the organisation has pledged 33 percent of its funds toward education in emergency programmes, including a $10 million research grant to any organisation able to demonstrate a sustainable model in the realm.

In May, the organisation, along with UAE-based Chalhoub Group and US-based ed-tech firm Pedago, embarked on a $4 million programme to help boost high school graduation rates among dispossessed and disadvantaged youth in Jordan.

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