Mothers want the best for their children.

A mother dreams that her child will live a better life than she has.  She wants them to learn to read, write and to pursue an education, because she knows that it will open up a world of opportunities.

Though people live in all sorts of situations in Canada, from poverty to prosperity, one thing stands out: there is a 97% literacy rate, and a 96% primary school completion rate. Nearly every child is given an education.

This is a stark contrast from education in developing countries.

In South Sudan, literacy rates are 31.9%. In Afghanistan, they are 38.2%, and Uganda they are 73.9%.  In each of these countries, male literacy towers by a margin of, at the very least, 10% over female rates.

It is obvious that women are less likely to receive proper schooling, but the education of mothers is key to saving the lives of millions of children.

In fact, a child whose mother can read is up to 50% more likely to live past age five.

One of the key ways War Child supports women and children in war-affected countries is by providing programming that reintroduces education into their lives. In fragile states, education is often unaffordable, unreliable and potentially dangerous. War Child develops innovative programs that overcome these problems and enable children and adults to get the schooling they need in order to build a productive future.

In places like South Sudan, where the primary school completion rate is less than 10%, the initiatives put in place by War Child can drastically change the lives of many.

An article by UNICEF states that “in South Sudan, a girl is three times more likely to die from child birth than to enter grade eight.”

With over half of the population in the country under the age of 18, providing education for girls is part of the solution to creating a generation of women able to work and make decisions that will keep both herself and her children safe.

We can all be a part of the change by supporting organizations like War Child that work to put an end to illiteracy and empower women in conflict-affected countries.