Health is a human right.
Infectious diseases, childhood illnesses and maternity-related causes of death still account for about the majority of Africa’s disease burden. Many of deaths are from entirely preventable and treatable causes, such as pneumonia, diarrhea, malnutrition and malaria. With proper care and treatment, premature deaths can be significantly reduced. Many health systems in low- and middle-income countries have a shortage of health-care workers, a lack of basic equipment, inadequate access to basic life-saving prevention and treatment tools, and poor infrastructure. Adequate investment in improving health systems is essential to saving the lives of mothers and children in the developing world. Community health programs are essential for development, empowerment, and healthy life outcomes.
Education is a catalyst for change.
Africa’s young people are our future leaders and will be the driving force behind sustainable growth on the continent. Investing in education is essential in building an educated and skilled workforce to propel economic and social growth. Education is central to a person’s ability to respond to opportunities and challenges that one encounters in life. By equipping young people with a set of competencies and skills, behaviors and attitudes, and a sense of cooperation and social responsibility, they can participate in society as productive workers and responsible citizens. Education contributes to economic development, lowers poverty and inequity, and improves lives. Education yields its greatest benefits in societies undergoing rapid technological, economic, and political changes. It also has the potential to benefit most the people and communities who have the least in terms of other resources.
Barriers to Attaining Education
The vast majority of the 48 million children entering Africa's schools over the past decade come from illiterate home environments. Lacking the early reading, language and numeracy skills that can provide a platform for learning, they struggle to make the transition to school - and their parents struggle to provide support with homework.
Gender roles + Social and economic environments
Girls education is a major priority. Across the region, 9 million girls between the ages of about 6 and 11 will never go to school at all, compared to 6 million boys. Their disadvantage starts early: 23% if girls are out of primary school compared to 19% for boys. By the time they become adolescents, the exclusion rate for girls is 36% compared to 32% for boys.
Schools systems in Africa are inevitably affected by the social and economic environments in which they operate. Household poverty forces many children out of school and into employment. Gender roles can mean that young girls are removed from school to collect water or care for their siblings. Meanwhile, countries such as Niger, Chad, and Mali have some of the world's highest levels of child marriage - many girls become brides before they have finished primary school.