Universal right to basic education

Acquiring basic knowledge and skills is vital for each individual to make choices, exercise their rights as citizens and participate in society and in professional life. The SDC works to ensure that every individual has access to quality education and can thus exercise their right to education.

Focus of the SDC's activities

The SDC is committed to ensuring that everyone – starting with children and young people – can exercise their right to basic education. Basic education means not only being able read, write and do simple arithmetic but also to understand the world in which one lives. Education furthers personal independence, enhances well-being and promotes citizenship.

The SDC supports the principle of equitable access to education for all, in particular for vulnerable groups such as children and young people who are excluded from the school system, women, and rural or nomadic populations. Ensuring equal opportunities requires developing innovative and effective education systems which are tailored to the needs of children and young people in order to include the largest possible number.

In partnership with national and local authorities, the SDC facilitates the development of decentralised educational systems which are closer to local communities. In several countries, it is improving quality compulsory schooling. It also helps set up educational alternatives to the formal school system (e.g. mobile schools and teaching offered in national languages) and supports bridging programmes that allow students to return to the formal school system at every stage of their education.

Last, the SDC advocates integrating basic education modules into vocational skills development programmes (e.g. literacy classes) or into projects in other sectors (e.g. health, water, agriculture, climate change, protection, governance).

The quality teaching is always of crucial importance because access to education is no guarantee that pupils will actually leave school having learned what was on the curriculum. The SDC therefore works with a wide range of partners to improve the management and performance of education systems.

At the international level, the SDC funds and plays a key role in guiding the activities of the Global Partnership for Education (GPE), a central platform to secure funding and facilitate dialogue among donors, partner countries, the private sector and civil society, which supports the education systems of some 60 countries around the world.

Background

The education sector faces many challenges. In 2017 some 263 million children and young people worldwide are out of school. Many children do not complete primary school, or the quality of teaching is so poor that they learn next to nothing. Despite the progress made in recent decades, in developing countries one young person in four remains illiterate. In sub-Saharan Africa this figure rises to almost one in every two, and in South Asia to one in three.

Apart from poverty, other disruptive events, such as war, natural disasters or forced displacements, can bring an end to a child’s education.

This underscores the need to improve the education systems of many developing and transition countries, particularly fragile contexts beset by growing inequality. Providing educational and socio-economic opportunities for young people can help reduce the risk of violence.

Documents

Current projects

Object 1 – 12 of 1188

Planned project

Yangtze (Changjiang) flood and drought risk management under climate change (CRM)

01.04.2020 - 31.12.2024

Flood and drought risks in the Yangtze river basin are significant and likely to increase because of climate change. To reduce human suffering and economic losses, the Yangtze Water Resources Commission needs a comprehensive assessment of future flood and drought risks under a changing climate, in order to improve policy-making and investment planning at basin level. The project will harness Swiss expertise in climate-modelling, flood-forecasting and risk management.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
China
Climate change and environment
Water
Disaster risk reduction DRR
Water sector policy
DISASTER PREVENTION AND PREPAREDNESS
WATER SUPPLY & SANITATION
Disaster prevention and preparedness
Water sector policy and administrative management

01.04.2020 - 31.12.2024


CHF 4'330'000



Planned project

Strengthening capacities for energy efficiency in buildings in Latin America (CEELA)

01.03.2020 - 28.02.2026

Emissions caused by the buildings and construction sector are one of the major causes of climate change. Switzerland will contribute to limiting global temperature rise by strengthening capacities for energy-efficient and thermally comfortable building design and construction in Latin America, transferring and adapting expertise gained from the Swiss success story of drastically lowering the energy use of new buildings in the last decades.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Latin America
Climate change and environment
Energy conservation & efficiency
Energy policy
ENERGY
ENERGY
Energy conservation and demand-side efficiency
Energy policy and administrative management

01.03.2020 - 28.02.2026


CHF 7'650'000



Planned project

BLOOOM: democratizing the future of farming

01.02.2019 - 31.12.2026

Blooom is a partnership between two social enterprises, Fairtrasa and eKutir. It provides new digital solutions to connect smallholder farmers to consumers. It provides smallholder farmers with access to information, finance and local and international markets mostly via mobile phone technology. In this public private development partnership, SDC’s supports Blooom to expand the business model and to scale it up in countries where the risks for the private sector to enter are too high, including in new countries in Africa. Blooom will collaborate with Swiss research stakeholders. 

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Global
Agriculture & food security
Agricultural services & market
Agricultural development
Agricultural co-operatives & farmers’ organisations
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
Agricultural services
Agricultural development
Agricultural co-operatives

01.02.2019 - 31.12.2026


CHF 6'850'000



Improving farm productivity in Georgia through dual vocational education and training

Three people in a greenhouse.

01.09.2018 - 31.08.2022

Agriculture is Georgia's most important sector. However, farming remains uncompetitive as farmers' skills are out of step with the job market and technological developments. Switzerland is continuing to support vocational education and training to improve productivity, farm income and the employment situation for students of agriculture.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Georgia
Vocational training
Agriculture & food security
Employment & economic development
Vocational training
Agricultural services & market
Rural development
EDUCATION
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
OTHER MULTISECTOR
Vocational training
Agricultural services
Rural development

01.09.2018 - 31.08.2022


CHF 6'352'000



Improved Healthcare in Hospitals in Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh

Women, children and men  in a Surgical ward

15.05.2018 - 30.09.2019

Since August 2017, over 700,000 Rohingyas have fled to Bangladesh to escape violence in Myanmar's Rakhine state. Together with refugees who fled during previous crises, some 900,000 refugees from Myanmar are currently living in Cox's Bazar district in southern Bangladesh. The region's three hospitals have been unable to cope with the enormous increase in the number of refugees.  Swiss Humanitarian Aid is helping to upgrade the hospitals' infrastructure and providing training in laboratory analysis and logistics.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bangladesh
Health
Medical services
Health systems strengthening
HEALTH
HEALTH
Medical services
Health policy and administrative management

15.05.2018 - 30.09.2019


CHF 200'000



Mozambique: Less illness thanks to better water supplies and sanitation

A villager in Niassa Province in northern Mozambique works a new handpump. She is surrounded by a group of people.

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021

Many cases of illness in the poor region of northern Mozambique are caused by the poor condition of water supplies and sanitation.  The SDC is assisting the efforts of the local people and responsible authorities to improve the situation. Aim of the project: Better living conditions for half a million people – and less poverty.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Mozambique
Health
Health systems strengthening
HEALTH
Health policy and administrative management

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021


CHF 7'445'000



Capacity building for Serbian municipalities

Around 50 parliamentarians in session at the Serbian parliament.

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021

Switzerland is supporting the Serbian government’s public administration reform, which aims to make it more effective and accessible to both citizens and the private sector. SwissPRO project is being run in 99 municipalities (two-thirds of Serbia) to improve good governance, social inclusion and gender equality.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Serbia
Governance
Human rights
Gender
Decentralisation
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
Women’s equality organisations and institutions
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
Decentralisation and support to subnational government (incl. accountability)
Human rights
Women's equality organisations and institutions

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021


CHF 7'000'000



Decentralization and Municipal Support in Kosovo (DEMOS)

Two young people rollerblading on a cycle path..

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021

Since the declaration of independence in 2008, Kosovo has been engaged in the reform and decentralisation of its public authorities with the aim of strengthening autonomy and local democracy in its 38 municipalities. The SDC's “Decentralisation and Municipal Support” project (DEMOS) aims to help municipalities enhance democratic governance and municipal management and provide better public services, thereby supporting Kosovo in its transition to a democratic and decentralised state.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Kosovo
Governance
Decentralisation
Democratic participation and civil society
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
GOVERNMENT AND CIVIL SOCIETY
Decentralisation and support to subnational government (incl. accountability)
Democratic participation and civil society

01.01.2018 - 31.12.2021


CHF 12'800'000



Bosnia and Herzegovina: Improving nursing care for better health services

A nurse sitting in a treatment room.

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2021

In Bosnia and Herzegovina nurses make up the largest group of healthcare professionals. However, the potential offered by their proximity to local communities is underexploited. They are often responsible for administrative tasks rather than patient care and, with limited career prospects, many nurses are attracted by better working conditions in Western Europe. This is regrettable because nurses and the care they provide can be a gateway to better health services for people living in rural areas and marginalised communities.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Health
Education
Health systems strengthening
Primary health care
Education facilities and training
HEALTH
HEALTH
EDUCATION
Health policy and administrative management
Basic health care
Education facilities and training

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2021


CHF 5'125'000



Improved Access to Markets for Female and Male Fresh Fruits and Vegetable (FFV) Small Scale Producers

Improved access to markets for fresh fruits and vegetable (FFV) small scale producers (men and women), occupied Palestinian territory

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2021

With focus on private sector-led agriculture and agribusiness, this program pursues systemic change in the agriculture sector and supports business modalities that favor small scale producers in the occupied Palestinian territory. The overall goal is to contribute to build a resilient economy with equitable agricultural growth, whilst contributing to protect small scale producers’ entitlements to natural resources and access to markets.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Palestinian Authority
Agriculture & food security
Agricultural development
Agricultural services & market
Agricultural policy
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
AGRICULTURE, FORESTRY, FISHING
Agricultural development
Agricultural services
Agricultural policy and administrative management

01.12.2017 - 30.11.2021


CHF 3'900'000



Revitalising labour market in Moldova

Two young women checking cables.

01.12.2017 - 31.12.2021

With Moldova facing high unemployment and a slowdown in growth, the SDC is funding a project designed to offer young job seekers alternatives to emigration and to improve the country's economic situation. Switzerland is supporting reforms aimed at training a qualified workforce and improving the investment climate. This will not only promote demand-driven training but also help create new jobs in the private sector.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Moldova
Vocational training
Vocational training
EDUCATION
Vocational training

01.12.2017 - 31.12.2021


CHF 5'350'000



Reducing youth unemployment in Kosovo with the help of the private sector

Two people on an adventure park ropes course.

16.11.2017 - 15.11.2021

The Promoting Private Sector Employment (PPSE) project is strengthening companies in the food and tourism sectors and spurring job creation in Kosovo.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Kosovo
Employment & economic development
SME development
INDUSTRY, MINING, CONSTRUCTION
Small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) development

16.11.2017 - 15.11.2021


CHF 7'320'000


Object 1 – 12 of 1188