A Global Campaign on Education for All Children with Visual Impairment
The Education for All Children with Visual Impairment (EFA-VI) is a global campaign and program of the International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment (ICEVI) acting in partnership with the World Blind Union (WBU) to ensure that all girls and boys with blindness and low vision enjoy the right to education. The Campaign, launched on July 16, 2006 is focusing on children in the developing world where currently it is estimated that less than ten-percent have access to education.
The Campaign addresses three key goals:
- achieving universal primary education
- promoting gender equality
- developing global partnerships for development
The Campaign works within the framework of the general and special education system of countries and initially focuses attention on awareness and demand creation for education of children with visual impairment. Provision of appropriate support in educational settings and creation of alternative settings to reach out to the un-reached are key aspects of the campaign.
The Campaign is implemented at two levels. A Global Task Force (GTF), chaired by the President of ICEVI and consisting of leading umbrella organisations and international non-governmental development organisations is involved in formulating policies whereas the day-to-day implementation of the campaign is the responsibility of the National Task Forces (NTF).
Capacity building of teachers and others, development of literature, production of assistive devices and operational research are other important elements of the Campaign. International funding organisations, inter-governmental organisations, corporations and foundations are partners in this global effort to create educational equity for all children with visual impairment.
The success of the campaign is measured by : 1. increased enrolment rates, 2. reduced dropout rates, 3. improved access to support services, and 4. educational achievement for children with visual impairment, on par with non-disabled children. The Global Campaign presents a unique opportunity for collaboration between the education and eye-health care communities in assuring that all children with visual impairment have access to the basic human right of “education for all”.
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