In its effort to tackle the disruption of learning for children and surge of gender-based violence brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government of Japan and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) signed an Arrangement Letter to support the project “Empowerment of Women and Girls in Marginalized Communities for Better Well-Being through Education and Advocacy”.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic protocols, H. E. Mr Atsuyuki Oike, Ambassador, Permanent Delegate of Japan to UNESCO and UNESCO Director of the Bureau of Strategic Planning Jean-Yves Le Saux signed the agreement letter administratively in Paris.
The Project is set to promote the empowerment of women and girls in marginalized communities for resilience strengthening and self-actualization through education, along with effective advocacy for eliminating Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV) and reducing the spread of COVID-19, ultimately contributing to peace, stability and inclusive development in Bauchi, Gombe and Delta states of Nigeria. This is expected to be achieved through combined effects of sports and psychosocial rehabilitation, community media empowerment, and second chance education opportunities.
This Project would complement another ongoing UNESCO project in Nigeria aimed at fighting the surge in gender-based violence, and countering violent extremism and hate speech. UNESCO is in the forefront of promoting youth and adult literacy through evidence-based advocacy and fostering partnerships with focus on the non-formal education.
Japan has had series of collaboration with UNESCO over the years in its effort towards sustainable development. The focus of the Project on the promotion of peace, stability, and inclusive development for shared prosperity is at the heart of Japan’s Country Development Cooperation Policy for Nigeria.