Project aims to transform girls’ education in Ivory Coast

“For every girl, the right to education” is the name of a project that benefits more than 32,000 girls aged 10 to 18, from the Abidjan district and the Tonkpi region in Côte d’Ivoire.

Carried out by Unicef and supported by the Canadian government – which is funding about $ 3.3 million – the project aims to mobilize the community and religious leaders to ensure maintenance. girls in school, distribute school kits to girls in secondary schools to reduce the cost of education for poor families.

In addition, it is planned to build physical spaces in schools – such as changing rooms and bathrooms to reduce the potential risk of gender-based violence. All of these actions – which are expected to last 24 months – will be aligned with government agencies, which will receive technical training to meet the educational needs of girls in emergency situations and offer girls tools, skills and platforms to identify barriers to education and propose solutions.

“Investing in girls’ education remains one of the most effective and equitable ways to accelerate a country’s development,” argues Julie Shouldice, Canada’s ambassador to Côte d’Ivoire.

The project will also allow the elaboration of a new strategic plan to accelerate the education of Ivorian girls. “To really speed up quality education for girls, we need to implement safe, welcoming and even learning systems that promote the development of all girls,” says Marc Vincent, Unicef representative in Côte d’Ivoire.

According to Unicef, investing in girls’ education generally increases their potential income and reduces the risk of perpetuating the cycle of poverty. According to the World Bank, each high school year allows girls to increase their adult salaries by up to 25%.

Concerning data

More than one in four girls in Côte d’Ivoire does not attend primary school. In high school, only 25% of girls complete education against 31% of boys. In Abidjan, that rate is 68% for girls, compared to 78% for boys. However, some Abidjan districts experience even greater disparities. In the Tonkpi region, in the west of the country, less than half of girls (43%) complete high school. The data are from the Ministry of National Education, Technical Education and Vocational Training of Côte d’Ivoire.