Barriers of language, ethnicity, poverty and remoteness are all too familiar for children of minority people groups in rural China. As they typically start school without knowing a word of Chinese, they are denied access from mainstream education and are confronted by a national curriculum which does not cater for their cultural diversity.
In some Cambodian communities, the importance of education is not fully realised. Children follow their parents into the status quos of rice farming, building or begging that have been the only vocational options for generations gone by.
In the Philippines the incidence of poverty is 50% for those who do not complete primary school, and less than 2% for those with a college degree. Within urban poor settlements situations at home are rarely conducive to study due to noisy and crowded spaces, obligation for family responsibilities, lack of affordable tuition, and extensive unhealthy eating habits.
Casteism leaves no respite within Indian spheres of education. The ‘untouchables’ are without rights and frequently subject to abuse and neglect from castes above. Whilst growing international awareness has led to some positive intervention, it is from this group of people that the bulk of India’s unskilled and uneducated still come.
In Timor-Leste, many families are too poor to invest in their child’s education. The combined cost of books, stationary, uniform, transport and school fees are prohibitive yet education is key to many of the nation’s development needs. By upskilling the next generation with the opportunity to go to school or university, the path is laid for a brighter future of youth engagement and employability.
In Papua New Guinea, poor planning has resulted in rapid and uncontrolled expansion of primary schools which is exceeding the supply of qualified teachers. Consequently, many remote schools have been operating with lessons taught by untrained teachers and volunteers, some of which have not completed primary school themselves. Literacy competencies are low, and teaching equipment is minimal.
Literacy in Bloom will address the lack of access to learning resources for unschooled adults, illiterate women and bilingual children in the developing world through Bloom – a free interactive software. The ability to read, write and understand numerical concepts has an enormous impact on a person’s life, as it is integral to social, political and economic empowerment.
Since Syria was hit with the ‘Arab Spring’ riots, protests and civil unrest, security has been severely depressed. Despite rigorous political efforts and international pressure to end the crisis in Syria, violence across all 14 governorates of the country continues unabated.
Relapse back into the ‘underground’ is common amongst Mongolian ex-prisoners. Quite literally, they plunge beneath the surface through purpose-built manholes into a labyrinth of heating pipes and tunnels.
Cambodia is a source, transit and destination country for human trafficking. Every year, thousands of men, women and children are sold by organized crime syndicates in Karaoke bars, massage parlours, street vendors, brick factories and brothels.