Education and training play essential roles in achieving and sustaining peace. In situations of conflict and severe poverty, nation building must include investment in people.

An integrated approach is always required to overcome conflict or extreme poverty. Effective inter-sectoral planning should include education, health, nutrition, sanitation and juridical protection as well as economic development, governance and the rule of law. However, in spite of abundant evidence regarding the centrality of the role of education for nation building in situations of conflict and/or extreme poverty, comprehensive approaches including education and training are rarely used. In addition, civil society organizations are often neglected even though non-state actors frequently dominate the scene in post-conflict or fragile states.

Currently, over 86 countries or regions of countries are experiencing complex emergencies or are in various phases of post-conflict transition. Most of these nations and many more have a significant portion of their populations living in severe poverty, and as a consequence, many young children are suffering from malnutrition, developmental delays and chronic and deadly diseases such as HIV/AIDS and malaria. Few social and economic services are available due to governmental chaos and the absence of major bilateral donor agencies that prefer to assist “sustainable development nations.”

Approximately 90 percent of the victims of local wars are civilians, and over 80 percent of them are women and children. Early childhood and parent education have become international priorities along with reforms to achieve healthy, well-functioning education systems that will help nations attain sustainable national development, security and peace. Education is increasingly becoming recognized as a cornerstone for rebuilding social cohesion, achieving human rights and equity, and empowering communities. Education is essential to achieving reconciliation, peaceful co-existence and democratic governance.

The RISE Institute seeks to fill a critical gap in technical leadership and international services for promoting the use of education for achieving and maintaining peace and development. The Institute offers specialized expertise in educational policy planning, program development and evaluation for purposes of nation building and child, family and community development.

Serving Parents and Children in Countries with Violent Conflict
or Poverty