Every human being should have the opportunity to make a better life for themselves. Unfortunately, too many children in the world today grow up without this chance, because they are denied their basic right to even attend primary school. A sustainable end to world poverty as we know it, as well as the path to peace and security, require that citizens in every country are empowered to make positive choices and provide for themselves and their families.
B. The Targets
Target 2a: Ensure that all boys and girls complete a full course of primary schooling
2.1 Net enrolment ratio in primary education
2.2 Proportion of pupils starting grade 1 who reach last grade of primary
2.3 Literacy rate of 15-24 year-olds, women and men
C. Did You Know?
- The Millennium Project recommends that private sector firms and organizations should contribute actively to policy design, transparency initiatives and, where appropriate, public-private partnerships. [Source: The Millennium Project].
- Nearly one billion people still do not have access to safe drinking water.Ninety-three countries, with 62 percent of the world’s population, are not on track to reduce under-five mortality by two-thirds by 2015.
- Seventy-four countries, with more than one-third of the world’s population, are not on track to halve income poverty by 2015.
- Eleven million children below age five still die every year from preventable causes – about 30,000 a day.
- By the end of 2001, an estimated 13 million children under 15 had lost one or both parents to AIDS in Africa, Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean.
- One in four adults in the developing world – 872 million people – is illiterate. (Oxfam UK – Education Now Campaign)
- More than 100 million children remain out of school. (Source:UNFPA)
- 46% of girls in the world’s poorest countries have no access to primary education. (Source:ActionAid)
- More than 1 in 4 adults cannot read or write: 2/3 are women. (Source:ActionAid)
- Universal primary education would cost $10 billion a year – that’s half what Americans spend on ice cream. (Source:ActionAid)
- Young people who have completed primary education are less than half as likely to contract HIV as those missing an education. Universal primary education would prevent 700,000 cases of HIV each year – about 30% all new infections in this age group. (Source:Oxfam)
- Developing country governments should adopt development strategies bold enough to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) targets for 2015. We term them MDG-based poverty reduction strategies. To meet the 2015 deadline, we recommend that all countries have these strategies in place by 2006. Where Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers (PRSPs) already exist, those should be aligned with the MDGs. [Source: The Millennium Project,2005]
- The Millennium Project recommends that MDG-based poverty reduction strategies should anchor the scaling up of public investments, capacity building, domestic resource mobilization, and official development assistance. They should also provide a framework for strengthening governance, promoting human rights, engaging civil society, and promoting the private sector. [Source: The Millennium Project]
- That you can join existing networks to help. Many large organizations are already working on poverty issues, and supporting them is one way to build support for the Goals. Visit the Millennium Project’s civil society links page to see a list of groups that have supported the Millennium Project’s recommendations.