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Education: crucial for children in crises and emergencies

Displacement often deprives children and adults from access to education. When people are displaced for a long time, the lack of access to education significantly reduces their ability to contribute to a prosperous and peaceful future for their communities. That's why ZOA aims to reach crisis-affected children with quality education.

Kids at school in Uganda
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Basic education to children in crisis areas

The coronavirus pandemic has had a devastating impact on learning outcomes for children worldwide. Schools were closed for a long time, while home schooling options were limited. ZOA continued to support education by providing innovative learning options to pupils at home in countries all over the world.

Primary and lower secondary education

No child may be out of school, even not in emergencies. ZOA offers support to stakeholders in building schools, training teachers and awareness raising among parents. We focus on getting more girls to school and make sure that they have safe access to water and sanitation. Girls in crisis are often subjected to human rights violations because of their gender. It is therefore crucial for girls to go to school, as it is both a form of protection and empowerment. Moreover, ZOA pays attention to psychosocial needs of children who have undergone traumatic experiences. Part of peace education are life skills trainings in which young children learn how to deal with conflicts.

Children in school in Uganda
Evert-Jan Pierik

Evert-Jan Pierik, Specialist Education

Nearly a quarter of the world’s children live in conflict or disaster-stricken countries. The importance of education for these kids cannot be overestimated.

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Vocational skills training

Not only young children are impacted by a lack of education during conflict or crisis. ZOA works closely together with organisations and institutes that provide vocational skills training (VST) programmes.

When people are employed or otherwise able to generate an income that sustains themselves and their families, this will add to their sense of dignity. ZOA ensures that these programmes are tuned to the capacities and aspirations of the VST students. In addition, collaboration is sought with major stakeholders in the labour market, so that graduates from VST programmes possess skills that are relevant for future employers. ZOA also provides start-up support to entrepreneurs, who want to start their own business.

Adult literacy training

The skills to read, write and calculate are important for accessing and assessing information. ZOA supports programmes that offer literacy and numeracy training to people, mostly girls and women. This support comprises the training of teachers and access to safe learning environments.

working together

Networks and partners

ZOA participates in several networks and works together with other NGO’s to increase the impact of our projects. We work with War ChildEdukansUNICEFSave the Children and INEE. ZOA supports the global Act 4 Education Campaign of 'Education Cannot Wait' that calls upon governments, private sector companies, philanthropic foundations and global leaders to contribute to education for 9 million children and youth experiencing war, forced displacement and disaster.

Where does ZOA promote education?

A selection of the countries where we are active in the field of education

Education for refugees


Preventing Violent Extremism