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Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation Takes Part in ‘Regional Forum on Recognition Policies and Outcomes of Informal Education’ in Beirut

  • 29 Sep 2018

The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation (MBRF) took part in the “Regional Forum on Recognition Policies and Outcomes of Informal Education”, organised by UNESCO’s Beirut Regional Bureau for Education in the Arab States and the UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning in Hamburg, Germany, with experts from Arab countries and around the world.

The MBRF delegation to Beirut showcased the objectives and action plan for the “Literacy Challenge”, launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai, during the Knowledge Summit 2017 to fill the gap in the primary education system in the Arab region.

Furthermore, the delegates outlined a tentative timeline for the project from 2018 to 2030, highlighting its local, regional and international partners. The floor was then open for discussion and input from the audience, within four subjects, namely: Definition of and concepts related to conventional and non-conventional illiteracy; Roadmap for implementing the project and target beneficiaries; Ways to ensure continuity, excellence and continuous evaluation; and Defining the efforts that can be recognised in the first year of the project.

MBRF’s CEO His Excellency Jamal bin Huwaireb said: “We took part in the ‘Regional Forum on Recognition Policies and Outcomes of Informal Education’ to promote a deeper familiarity with our pioneering ‘Literacy Challenge’, through which we seek to educate the 30 million illiterate Arab youth and children by 2030 in collaboration with UNESCO and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).”

“The Forum is an ideal opportunity for the Foundation to exchange ideas and visions for the ‘Literacy Challenge’ to achieve the best possible results, as well as to exchange academic expertise with other participating delegations, explore ways to eradicate illiteracy, and discuss accreditation methods in the informal education system,” H.E. added.

The delegation explored Arab and international literacy efforts at the event, which included an overview of the International Literacy Day and of various alternative education programmes in the Arab region. Participants discussed the draft regional policy framework for alternative education programmes, as well as the recognition and accreditation of informal education.

Moderating the session, Dr Hijazi Idris, Regional Specialist for Basic Education in UNESCO’s Beirut Regional Bureau for Education in the Arab States, reiterated UNESCO’s keen interest to cooperate with MBRF on the Literacy challenge, and to offer all necessary assistance and support for it.

For his part, Dr Hany Torky, Director of the Arab Knowledge Project at the UNDP, gave a presentation about the Programme’s strategic 10-year partnership with MBRF, which led to the latter being officially recognised as a “Knowledge Partner” for the UN during a meeting of the General Assembly in New York in September 2018. Dr Torky went on to assert the UNDP’s commitment to supporting the ‘Literacy Challenge’.

The MBRF delegation met with the national taskforces in many Arab countries, including Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Sudan, Jordan, Iraq, Palestine, Morocco, and Yemen. The attendees applauded the Foundation for leading the regional efforts to eradicate illiteracy, underlining the importance of targeting various age groups, particularly the youth (aged 15 to 24) who are at risk of abandoning their education or being forced into child labour.

Participants in the Forum underlined the necessity to sustain efforts that seek to resolve the illiteracy problem among children, valuing the great knowledge role played by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation through its various programmes, which it implements in cooperation with various international and regional bodies.