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In focus

Our goals for education

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Poor access to education can undermine people’s potential to improve their lives. The International Rescue Committee provides children, youth and adults with educational opportunities that help keep them safe and learning the skills they need to survive and thrive.

Seven-year-old Ebalo Raimond is just one of the thousands of children living in the Nyarugusu refugee camp in Tanzania receiving vital education with the support of the IRC.

Photo: Peter Biro/IRC

Learn more about our education goals and how we are working to meet them:

Ensure that children aged 0 to 5 develop cognitive and social-emotional skills

How we get there:

  • Supporting parents in providing consistent, nurturing and supportive behaviors towards young children, including engaging in supportive play and learning activities;
  • Providing young children with access to quality early childhood development, care and pre-primary education;
  • Providing community resources that help keep young children safe in their homes, schools and communities, and support them when they experience harm;
  • Ensuring that childcare is affordable in the United States, caregivers are culturally competent, and children have access to age-appropriate mental health and trauma care.

Ensure that school-aged children develop literacy, numeracy and social-emotional skills

How we get there:

  • Creating quality learning spaces in formal schools and informal education settings, such as community-based education and accelerated learning programs for children who have missed years of schooling;
  • Providing teaching and learning materials so teachers and facilitators are equipped to teach meaningful lessons;
  • Ensuring children are healthy and well-nourished in order to learn;
  • Ensuring that school-aged girls and boys in the United States have access to supportive learning environments, attain a high school diploma or equivalent, and can access post-secondary education.

Women in a literacy class at an IRC women's center in Mafraq, Jordan.

Photo: Peter Biro/IRC

Ensure that youth and adults have high levels of livelihood, literacy, numeracy and social-emotional skills

How we get there:

  • Providing learning opportunities that teach employment-related and trade-specific technical skills, such as budgeting, accounting and marketing;
  • Supporting the development of social and emotional skills people need to control emotions, set goals, make decisions, persevere and bounce back in the face of setbacks;
  • Ensuring that adult women and men in the United States are motivated to learn, can access key skill-building opportunities, and understand U.S. law and their rights within it.

Ensure that children, youth, and adults have regular access to safe and functional education services

How we get there:

  • Creating learning spaces and formal schools that establish and enforce safety procedures;
  • Supporting and training teachers to establish safe and nurturing environments;
  • Removing the barriers that prevent girls from attending school, and ensuring they are safe;
  • Ensuring that girls and boys in the United States have positive social connections and role models.

Explore our education work.

Outcomes and evidence

The IRC's Outcomes and Evidence Framework supports people working in development and humanitarian aid to design effective programs. It delivers key information on outcomes related to health, safety, education, economic wellbeing, and power through theories of change that demonstrate how to achieve these outcomes, evidence for which interventions work or don’t work to achieve the outcomes, and guidance on how to measure progress against the outcomes.