September 20, 2019
Kinshasa, DRC– This month, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) proudly allocated $7.7 million to increase children’s access to education and to increase the resilience of youth and school communities through education. Under the framework of the U.S.-DRC Privileged Partnership for Peace and Prosperity, USAID will work with civil society and faith based organizations, private schools and international partners to assist those who are most in need in Equateur, Kinshasa, South Kivu, North Kivu, Kasai Central, and Haut Katanga through school materials and improved classroom reading and math instruction.
In close collaboration with its stakeholders, USAID will improve the teaching, learning, and skills building in schools and education centers mainly in areas affected by conflict and crisis. Activities will support teachers in the classroom and enhance lives of children and youth and their education and well-being, with a focus on girls and women.
Due to recurrent natural and manmade crises, more than 3.5 million Congolese children do not attend primary school. In many primary schools, there are insufficient textbooks, instructional materials, and teacher training opportunities. Teachers, the most important element for student learning, are roundly acknowledged as underpaid and underappreciated. As a result, one-third of Congolese children who enter first grade will not complete sixth grade and only 65% of youth are fully literate.
By working with local systems and resources, USAID, a U.S. government agency, focuses on two main outcomes: 1) increased access to education services that are safe and conducive for teaching and learning, and 2) improved delivery of high quality instruction in literacy, numeracy, soft and vocational skills, and social and emotional skills.
The allocation of $7.7 million to DRC’s education sector meets USAID Fiscal Year 2018 commitment of $25 million to increase children’s access to education and resilience of youth and school communities. USAID’s work in the DRC complements the U.S. Government Strategy on International Basic Education for Fiscal Years 2019 – 2023 and directly supports the Global Partnership for Education grant to the Congolese government.