Culture and Education

Joy in South Sudan, as schools reopen after 14-month COVID lockdown

The countrywide reopening of schools in South Sudan is a welcome step on the road to “normalcy” for youngsters, two in three of whom need humanitarian assistance, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday.

World Book and Copyright Day celebrates ‘fundamental importance’ of literature

At a period of global uncertainty and confinement, books open the door to freedom, transporting readers beyond time and borders, the head of the UN’s educational and cultural agency, UNESCO, said on Friday. 

‘Careers have no gender’, connect girls to tech, for a brighter future UN urges 

Despite information and communication technology playing such a key role throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN chief said that half the world remains offline, in his message marking International Girls in ICT Day, on Thursday – most of whom are women and girls in developing countries. 

Museums must not be overlooked in pandemic recovery, UNESCO chief warns

Faced with alarming and extended closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the world’s museums are of “fundamental importance” to reviving cultural life and preserving our shared heritage “in all its diversity”, said the UN cultural agency chief on Tuesday.  

The more you learn, the more you earn: education and poverty alleviation in Thailand

A good education is often seen as a route out of poverty, but many disadvantaged children are unable to finish school. In Thailand, a project involving the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, UNESCO, is linking academic achievement to cash rewards, providing tangible benefits to marginalized families, and helping kids to stay in school.

Many countries spending more on debt than education, health and social protection combined

Around one in eight nations spends more on debt than on social services, according to a new report from the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) launched on Thursday, calling for debt service relief and restructuring to enable countries to bounce back from the pandemic.

100 million more children fail basic reading skills because of COVID-19

A new study released on Friday by the UN cultural agency, reveals that more than 100 million more children than expected, are falling behind the minimum proficiency level in reading, due to COVID-related school closures.  

Collective commitment needed to end the ‘poison’ of racism: UN cultural chief says

With the COVID-19 pandemic providing fertile ground for the resurgence of racism and discrimination, the head of the UN’s educational and cultural agency, UNESCO, called on Monday for countries to stand united in what she described as “these testing times”. 

First Person: Poetry and the pain of loss and leaving; a voice from Syria

A young Syrian woman has told the United Nations how poetry helped her to convey the emotions of all the children who have been caught up in the decade-long civil war in her country.

In Iraq, Pope spreads message of peace, religious tolerance and humanity’s resilience

Pope Francis’ historic visit to northern Iraq to hold prayers at an ancient church destroyed by ISIL “sends a clear message to the world that harmony and cohesion between the followers of all religions is the only way for the advancement and progress of humanity,” the top UN culture official has said.