Education in Emergencies (EiE)

In 2019, there were 79.5 million forcibly displaced people in the world: 26 million refugees, 4.2 million asylum-seekers, 45.7 million internally displaced (UNHCR, 2020)

Education in Emergencies (EiE) refers to the provision of education services and support in humanitarian crises, including conflicts, natural disasters, and other emergencies. EiE aims to ensure that children and youth affected by crises have continued access to quality education, despite the challenging circumstances they face.

Education in Emergencies plays a critical role in mitigating the impact of crises on children and youth, empowering them to continue learning and building brighter futures despite the challenges they face.

Education in Emergencies is essential for protecting children and youth, promoting their well-being, and building resilience in the face of crises. By prioritizing education as a fundamental human right, humanitarian actors can mitigate the impact of emergencies and support children’s rights to learn, grow, and thrive, even in the most challenging circumstances.

Education saves lives and helps maintain a sense of normalcy in crisis situations Education can provide a safe environment for learners, protecting them from violence, abuse and exploitation. It can also protect adolescent girls from forced marriages and early pregnancies.


When crisis strikes, education seems to not be the top priority for political leaders, as witnessed during the last G7 Summit. The world is facing an unprecedented education crisis, with irreversible damage caused to future generations by COVID-19-related school closures and a rollback of years of progress on women’s and girls’ rights. It is critical that actors in the education sector and beyond come together with a common goal – to support children through holistic, collective, and intersectoral approaches with a long-term view.

The conflicts on the African continent have had adverse consequences for the younger generation especially their right to education. The effects on education include the destruction of school infrastructure, the use of schools as temporary shelters, a reduction in the number of teachers, diminished wellbeing among teachers and learners, an increase in gender disparities and other forms of inequity, and overall systemic dysfunction. Furthermore, more and more countries, particularly those in protracted crises, are faced with multiple risks at once.

Here are some key aspects of Education in Emergencies:

Continuity of Learning: EiE programs prioritize the continuity of learning for children and youth affected by emergencies. This includes providing access to formal and non-formal education opportunities, such as temporary learning spaces, distance learning programs, and catch-up classes.

Psychosocial Support: EiE recognizes the importance of addressing the psychosocial needs of children and youth who have experienced trauma and upheaval. Programs often integrate psychosocial support activities into education interventions, including counseling, art therapy, and peer support initiatives.

Safe Learning Environments: EiE efforts prioritize creating safe and supportive learning environments for children and youth. This includes ensuring physical safety in schools, addressing gender-based violence and discrimination, and promoting inclusive education practices that accommodate the needs of all learners, including children with disabilities.

Teacher Training and Support: EiE programs often provide training and support for teachers and education staff working in crisis-affected areas. This may include training on trauma-informed teaching practices, psychosocial support techniques, and strategies for working with diverse student populations.

Community Engagement: EiE initiatives actively engage communities, parents, and local stakeholders in the planning and implementation of education interventions. By involving community members in decision-making processes, EiE programs can better address the specific needs and priorities of affected populations.

Coordination and Collaboration: Effective EiE requires coordination and collaboration among various actors, including governments, humanitarian organizations, donors, and local authorities. Coordination mechanisms such as Education Clusters or Education in Emergencies Working Groups help ensure that efforts are well-aligned and resources are effectively mobilized.

Long-Term Resilience Building: While EiE initially focuses on meeting immediate education needs in emergencies, it also emphasizes the importance of building long-term resilience. This may include efforts to strengthen education systems, promote disaster risk reduction, and support the transition from emergency response to recovery and development.

Out-of-school children and young people are at greater risk of violence, rape, and recruitment into fighting, prostitution, and other life-threatening, often criminal, activities

As part of  the UN Transforming Education Summit, EIC joined organizations around the world to  call for concrete commitments and immediate action to support the education needs of 222 million children and young people affected by conflict and crisis by: 

Develop strong and resilient education management information systems (EMIS)

Crisis-resilient education plans

Education humanitarian response plans

This is to bridge the humanitarian-development-peace nexus


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