New York, NY
The Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children released today Your Right to Education: A handbook for refugees and displaced communities. The brightly illustrated book, which is aimed at refugee children, young people and adults, raises awareness of the universal right to education, especially in areas of conflict. It is being released on Human Rights Day and will be presented tomorrow at the United Nations during the UN World Fit for Children Plus 5.
"Education is a basic human right, guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights," said Carolyn Makinson, executive director of the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children. "No matter where you live or who you are, you are entitled to go to school. Millions of children and youth around the world are missing out on education, especially at the secondary school level."
School can protect children from recruitment into armed groups and dangerous work. Education gives students the skills they need to join the workforce and make a good life for themselves and their community in the future, whether they return home or settle elsewhere.
The 42-page book in English, French and Arabic is illustrated by R. Gregory Christie, a three-time Coretta Scott King Honor Award-winner. His work has appeared in The New Yorker and has been honored as Best Illustrated Books of the year by The New York Times.
The book can be used as a coloring book, a tool to facilitate discussion and a starting point for role-plays and skits about universal and inalienable human rights, the freedom from fear and abuse, the freedom to achieve one's dreams and the freedom to make well-informed decisions.
"We have been so eager to get our hands on a book like this," said Carl Triplehorn, emergency education advisor at Save the Children, who has just returned from
Your Right to Education is a second in a series of tools that the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children and the Pearson Foundation have developed to improve access to quality education for displaced communities. The first book, Right to Education during Displacement: A resource for organizations working with refugees and internally displaced persons, was developed for international and local organizations, the United Nations and governments working with displaced communities.
For additional information and to download a copy of Your Right to Education, visit http://womenscommission.org/pdf/right_to_ed_handbook.pdf