European ambassadors visit community schools in Upper Egypt
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CAIRO: Ambassadors of Belgium and the Netherlands to Cairo, Gilles Heyvaert and Gerard Steeghs, visited two community schools in Upper Egypt where vulnerable children receive education in light of the United Nations’ World Fund (WFP) Program, according to a joint press statement.

In September 2014, the WFP and the European Union launched a four-year campaign to combat child labor via enhancing education access. The E.U. has provided €60 million to encourage children to learn.

Per the program, the child’s family receives monthly take-home food ration for allowing their children access to schools. The ration includes “10 kg of rice and a liter of vitamin-enriched oil,” according to the statement.

In the first day, the ambassadors visited Banaweet School in Sohag, 467 km away from Cairo, as more than 18 children receive a daily nutritious in-school snack; while they visited Gad El Kareem School in the Governorate of Luxor, 720 km south of of Cairo, where more than 54 children have been educated, the statement added.

“We are proud to be part of helping children –particularly young girls – to pursue their education and maintain their rights, in addition to their family members who will benefit from the project interventions. Through the financing of this program with a 60 Million Euro grant, the EU is contributing to the ongoing efforts to tackle some of the most critical issues affecting Egypt’s poorest children: under nutrition, access to (quality) primary education, and child labor.” Ambassador James Moran, Head of the European Union Delegation to Egypt, was quoted as saying.

The project targets 100,000 children every year and will be applied in 16 governorates, according to a statement from WFP on Sep. 21, 2014.

According to 2010 data from the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics (CAPMAS), 17 million students were also working. And, according to the U.N., Egypt’s population size in 2010 reached 78.1 million.

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