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September 8 is International Literacy Day

Today is International Literacy Day. It also marks the 5th year of United Nations Literacy Decade 2003 to 2012. The initiative started in January 2003 by a resolution of the UN General Assembly after endorsement at the 2000 Dakar World Education Forum. Improving literacy is also one of the “Millenium Development Goals” of the United Nations Development Program.

One of the main targets of the literacy initiative is to “achieve universal primary education”, that is, ensure that children everywhere, boys and girls alike, will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling by 2015. Children, especially girls, are especially threatened by illiteracy. According to the World Bank, about 130 million? school-aged children are not attending school, most in developing countries. Two-thirds of these are girls. Worldwide, more than 880 million adults are illiterate and two-thirds of these are women.

It is highly important that literacy among girls and women be improved, considering a woman’s role in the education and upbringing of her children.

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