The UN Millennium Development Goals Summit came to a close last week. There’s still a lot to sort through from the negotiations and announcements, but a few key facts are already clear.
Firstly, thanks to your help we have made some important strides towards guaranteeing every child the education they deserve. New pledges from several governments including Australia alongside pledges from the World Bank mean a likely increase in aid to primary education by around $700 million a year for the next 5 years.
Because of what happened last week over 4 million more children could have the opportunity to go to school for the first time. That’s more than the number of primary school children in London, New York and Paris combined – a great result for all of us that have called for action on Education for All this year.
Secondly, it’s clear much more must be done. With too few countries keeping their promises millions of children will still be denied the chance in life that an education brings. Several countries have indicated they will release their plans in a few months time. Our work must go on and we need to use these new announcements to throw down a challenge to other donors to come forward in the coming months.
Lastly, we want to say thank you for your support so far. There’s no doubt that the voices of the millions in the Global Campaign for Education’s 1GOAL campaign were heard — and you made a difference:
On Monday, you helped set the tone for the entire summit. In less than 24 hours, 1GOAL supporters sent in thousands of personal stories and messages calling for urgent action on education. These comments were projected directly onto the wall of our high-level panel, in full view of leading international dignitaries and the global press.
The panel featured inspiring speeches by the likes of former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and 1GOAL co-founder and co-chair Queen Rania of Jordan — but above all it was the passion of 1GOAL’s individual supporters that showed attending dignitaries that the people of the world stand united behind this call.
1GOAL’s youngest ambassador, 12-year old Soweto student Nthabiseng Tshabalala, spoke at multiple events and drew standing ovations wherever she went. Backed by the words of vision and encouragement sent to her by 1GOAL supporters across the globe, Nthabiseng took the call for education straight to the hearts of the world’s most important decision makers.
And on Wednesday Nthabiseng and Queen Rania presented the 18 million declarations of support from 1GOAL supporters directly to the UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon. And he promised to do everything possible to encourage the nations of the world to keep the promise of a quality education to every single child.
As part of the Global Campaign for Education, 1GOAL is built on the strength of national campaigns working on the ground in over 100 countries to build support and fight for change. Each one of us should feel proud to be part of this amazing global network of millions of football fans, students, teachers, parents, and concerned citizens who have all come together for 1GOAL. Last week together we proved that when ordinary people combine our voices we can bring a brighter future a little closer for millions of children worldwide.
There’s still much work to do. We can’t sit back and wait until 2015 – we need to target the national, regional and global moments where we can secure the changes needed to achieve education for all. Over the coming months we will be in touch about these opportunities and will face the challenges ahead together knowing we are part of an incredible team.
With deepest appreciation for all you’ve done so far,
The 1GOAL team