Media centre

Press releases

Stories

Multimedia

Contact Details for the ECA Office

 

Stories

 

Protecting our children when disaster strikes: Education in Emergencies

 

ANTIGUA, 16 October 2018 - After crises occur it is vitally important to get children back to school as quickly as possible, providing a return to normality, continuity and hope.

 

With the aim of supporting partners to implement the Caribbean Safe School Initiative, a recent major regional training workshop brought together experts and practitioners to improve preparedness and response in education systems, strengthen capacity, reduce post-disaster impact on children, and ensure their right to a continued education.  

 

Held in Antigua and Barbud, the three-day Education in Emergencies training was regional in scope and ambition with participants from 12 eastern Caribbean countries and territories joined by counterparts from Belize, Brazil, Haiti, Guyana, Jamaica and Suriname.  Child protection and education officers - who need to work together in preparedness and response – attended alongside representatives from national disaster offices.  

 

The workshop was requested by country partners following a Lessons learned: learning together conference, held in May 2018, aimed at reflecting on the emergency response during the Caribbean’s turbulent 2017 hurricane season.

 

A milestone

 

“This training is a milestone in the eastern Caribbean, with education and child protection sectors working together to protect our children and adolescents during the most vulnerable situations, in a very disaster prone region,” said Unai Secona, Education Manager in UNICEF’s Office for the Eastern Caribbean.   

 

Participants at the lively event shared experiences and good practice, worked on increasing coordination between ministries of education and partners at all levels, and built technical knowledge around child protection, psychosocial support, and core cross-cutting issues such as water and sanitation control. There were also moves to embed disaster risk management training and programmes in formal school curricula.  

 

Powerful motivation

 

The gathering was seen as providing a powerful motivation for all the participating countries to develop Education in Emergency plans in the region.

 

According to David Cool, Education Officer and Champion for Disaster Risk Management in Dominica’s Ministry of Education, “As climate change continues to impact small island states like ours…we have become increasingly vulnerable to natural disasters. The need to find ways to mitigate such phenomena is paramount, hence the training could not have come at a better time to explore best approaches in education and child protection sectors.” He added, “We, however, need to collaborate our efforts in order to protect children and adolescents and ensure that the standards are the same across the region.”  

 

The event was organised by UNICEF (Eastern Caribbean, Regional Office and Headquarters) in partnership with the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency, the European Union / ECHO, Global Alliance for Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience in the Education Sector, IsraAID, the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States, UNESCO, and the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) with representatives from the Caribbean Development Bank, the UNDP, UN WOMEN and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

 

 

Protecting our children when disaster strikes: Education in Emergencies

Social protection in the face of disaster

Mrs Hill one year on still going strong

Barbuda: getting its groove back?

After the storm

Less talk, more action: Regional Child Protection Focal Point meeting concludes

Preparing for the hurricane season: “It’s going to be different this time.”

Dreams of home and Olympic gold

Barbuda: “My heart, my home”

Every little helps: cash transfers bring relief to families in Dominica

New Year starts with shelter woes - Unhappy to be sheltering from the storm

Dominica schools slowly reopening after devastating hurricane

Adolescents 3-months blog by Debbie Daway

Dominica three months after: Trying to get back to ‘normal’ after Hurricane Maria

Remarkable progress in the response to Caribbean hurricanes, but plenty more to do

WFP and UNICEF Support the Government of Dominica to Provide Emergency Cash Transfers to 25,000 people affected by Hurricane Maria

Taking a moment to play amid the upheaval in BVI

Recovering from the storm: “It may rain but the sun will come out again"

Returning to happiness on Anguilla: reflections…

Vulnerable children getting a chance after Maria

UN Secretary-General praises courage of indigenous community in Dominica

Searching for safety and schooling in Antigua

 

 
Search:

 Email this article

unite for children