Global Action Week for Education Round Up 2012

May 2, 2012
by Brian Callahan, Campaign Associate, Global Campaign for Education - U.S. Chapter

Around the world more than 100 countries participated in the annual Global Action Week for Education (GAW) with the Global Campaign for Education (GCE) to build attention to the urgent need to invest in the future of the millions of out-of-school children around the world. This year, GAW focused on Early Childhood Development, and particularly on the needs of the 200 million children under age five who are not attaining their developmental potential. International advocates and leading experts are calling on governments to take actions to ensure the rights of all children to a quality basic education. Check out their call to support Education for All:

For GAW, the U.S. Chapter of the Global Campaign for Education (GCE-US) rallied global education supporters to participate in the Big Picture Photo Petition campaign by taking photographs with signs saying, “I support Education for All because…” Through these photos, activists were able to say why access to education matters to them and they were able to lend their voice to the fight to ensure access to quality basic education for all. The photos were even taken to the halls of Congress and were featured at the GCE-US’ Capitol Hill briefing later in the week.

RESULTS Staff, Crickett Nicovich, on why she supports EFA

Global Action Week continued with days of actions and events focusing on educating policy-makers and building awareness about global education. GCE put together an activist tool-kit to encourage learning about the issue, for promoting awareness in local communities, and for building political will for global education.  Using these tools, activist Cindy Levin of the Chicago RESULTS chapter, conducted the Lesson for All in three classrooms! 

Chicago RESULTS Activist, Cindy Levin, teaches the Lesson for All

Throughout the week, grassroots supporters were encouraged to reach out members of Congress to educate them on the issues. To build awareness on Capitol Hill, GCE-US coalition members joined forces with a local Girl Scout Brownie troop from Fairfax, Virginia on Capitol Hill to hand deliver cookies to members of the U.S. House of Representatives. The scouts thanked the members of Congress for supporting both global and domestic early childhood education programs this year. At each office, the girls spoke with congressional staff about the importance of education, especially in the life of a girl child.

Girl Scouts meet with Tahlia in Rep. Lowey’s office

GCE-US member School Girls Unite, a network of Maryland high school and junior high student activists, met with their representatives and senators in Congress to convey the importance of funding for education, especially through the Global Partnership for Education. 

School Girls Unite, GCE coalition member, meets with Sen. Cardin

To culminate the week’s activities, GCE-US, Save the Children, the National Education Association, and RESULTS, co-hosted a Congressional briefing sponsored by global education champion Rep. Nita Lowey of New York. Titled “Rights from the Start: Early Childhood Care and Education”, the briefing focused on the value of early childhood education and featured an exciting panel with Carol Bellamy from the Global Partnership for Education, Judie Gerald from Save the Children, Jacques van der Gaag from the Center for Universal Education at the Brookings Institute, and RESULTS’ Executive Director Joanne Carter. 

Joanne Carter, RESULTS ED, at Hill Briefing Rep. Nita Lowey (NY) at GCE briefing

To close the panel, Rep. Lowey encouraged the audience to continue to build support and momentum for these issues. The voices of advocates are needed to help protect funding and to push forward Education for All as a US development priority.

GCE- US thanks RESULTS activists for your part in another successful Global Action Week and for your support for this great campaign! Your actions build the momentum necessary to ensure that no matter where a child is born, they will one day have access to a quality basic education. 

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