In this third issue of The Blue Dot, we have chosen to focus on the often forgotten aspect of education in the context of crises. While relief efforts tend to focus on emergency responses such as providing food and shelter, more often than not rebuilding schools and ensuring that students continue to attend their classes are not considered priorities. At UNESCO MGIEP, we believe that when education is relegated to the side-lines, there is little hope for a country and its citizens to recover.
In this issue, we have brought together expert contributors from academia and the field—from countries such as Afghanistan, Nepal and South Sudan—and have dedicated a large section to the ongoing civil conflict in Syria, which will soon enter its fifth year. With almost half of Syria’s population living as refugees or as internally displaced persons, an entire generation of young people risks losing out on stability and a better future. Our Syria Section explores how these young people, with a particular focus on those who have sought refuge in Germany, are faring and what their hopes are for the future.
In other parts of the magazine, we focus on technology and on how modern information and communications technologies (ICTs) can help students access a better education. From impoverished communities in Calcutta using Skype to connect with teachers around the world, to new interactive platforms built for young people to discuss global issues, we hope the stories and experiences we have collected for our readers will give a new and fresh perspective on what it means for education when a crisis hits. We also hope that you enjoy our photo contest, which drew more than 100 entries from young people around the world on what “education and crisis” means to them.