More than 62 million children and youth without access to school suffer in conflict settings around the world.
Yet, year after year, the international community fails to provide adequate support for them. Parents and children often rank schooling as a top priority, but programs that protect children and provide education receive less than 2% of humanitarian funding.
Too often it can take more than six months for the IRC to receive support from governmental funders at the start of an emergency. This delay prevents skilled humanitarian specialists from reaching children with responsive programs when they are most vulnerable in the first months of displacement. While underfunding in long-term programming prevents children from receiving continuous access to education when it is most important for their future.
This global funding shortfall leaves uprooted children and youth at-risk to prolonged psychological and physical abuse, abduction, recruitment into armed forces, and developmental stagnation. The consequences of underestimating the importance of programs that educate and protect children can prove dire.
As the average length of displacement for refugees and other uprooted people has stretched to 20 years, failing to invest in education in crisis settings may result in an entire lost generation of children.
At the IRC, we not only envision a world where the most vulnerable survivors of crises are protected: for more than 80 years we have designed, delivered and developed evidence-based programs that empower children and youth to develop to their full potential. Today, the IRC serves more than 1.6 million children across more than 30 countries, and in doing so, helps prepare them as future leaders in their communities and countries.
Backed by our legacy of expertise in providing high-quality programming, we want to raise the bar globally in delivering faster, better care and education for more children impacted by crisis.
There has never been a more important moment to prioritize this goal: Today, at least 68 million people have been displaced by war and disaster—a global record. More than half of those displaced are children.