More Girls in School Means Better Families and Communities in Sierra Leone
Sierra Leone’s president Earnest Bai Koroma recently reaffirmed the nation’s commitment to education at the official launching of the first national school census report in Freetown. He said that quality and affordable education is among the top five priorities for his government, especially when it comes to girls. He acknowledged that the dropout rate among girls is a big challenge, but one that must be overcome. “Let us all continue to raise the awareness that more girls in schools mean better families, better communities and a better nation.” Read more here.
Progress Still Needed for the Health of Women and Children
The number of maternal and child deaths in developing countries has declined over the past several years, but a recent report shows much more must be done in order to save lives. Despite the fact that more than 95 percent of child and maternal deaths occur in sub-Saharan Africa, there are countries in the region that have made progress. Malawi, Rwanda, and Tanzania have all seen a rate of decline that was on average 5 percent or more each year between 2000 and 2010. Much more work must be done in order to support women’s and children’s health, including greater access to contraceptives, more trained midwives, prevention of infectious diseases and stronger education. Read more here.
China Sends First Woman into Space
China has just launched a rocket into space carrying its first ever female astronaut. Thirty-three year old Liu Yang will join two men as they work toward building a large, permanent space station by 2020. Read all the details here.
Disabled Children Face Education Barriers in Southern Africa
A five nation study on the state of special needs education in southern African shows a grim situation for children with disabilities. The study shows the region is a long way from being able to provide decent education of any sort for most children with special needs. One of the problems centers around the lack of adequately trained teachers, especially those that are trained to deal with the stigma and negative attitude toward children with disabilities. Unfortunately, disabled children are still viewed as a curse on the family and community in many places, so many are denied an education. Read more about this here.