International Rescue Committee (IRC)


Girls study math in Jalozai refugee camp, Pakistan 
 Girls learning math at an IRC-run school in Jalozai refugee camp, Pakistan. Photo: Peter Biro/IRC 

All people, including children uprooted by conflict, have a right to a good education. 

Education plays a fundamental role in reducing the effects of war-trauma, providing young people with stability and structure during and after emergencies, and helping them develop to their full potential. It also gives youth and adults the knowledge and skills to earn a living, contribute to their family and community, and lead healthier and more productive lives. 

The International Rescue Committee has been providing educational services for vulnerable people affected by conflict for more than 30 years. We are dedicated to increasing access to educational opportunities wherever we work.

Our first education programs started in the early 1980s to set up schools for 40,000 Cambodian refugee children in Thailand. Our education work has since provided hope and promise to millions of children living in crisis zones around the world. In 2014 we provided schooling and educational opportunities to more than 1 million girls and boys, and trained nearly 23,000 educators.

IRC education program areas

  • Formal primary and secondary schooling
  • Kindergartens and pre-schools
  • Healing Classrooms: Non-formal learning and recreational programs during emergencies
  • Youth groups
  • Literacy, numeracy, skills-training, and other adult education
  • Accelerated learning programs
  • Human rights and peace education, conflict resolution

Learn more

Read more about our education work.

For more information, please contact us at