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Campaign against illiteracy

 

Monday 22 November 2010

The Iraqi Democratic Future Network continues to campaign to wipe out illiteracy in Iraq as part of the Global Campaign for Education, through a coalition of Iraqi civil society organizations in support of the Global Campaign for Education.

The campaign covered several provinces: Baghdad, Babil, Dhi Qar, Erbil. It started on the 20th of April 2009 with IDFN launching a cooperation with other civil society organizations to create logistics for the global education campaign: printing posters, banners, and other necessary technical means.

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IDFN public rally, Baghdad, April 2009

There was communication with civil society and academic personalities and government authorities in the field of education for the purpose of their participation in activities and events for the campaign.

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IDFN public rally, Baghdad, April 2009

There was a preparatory meeting ahead of the campaign, with a number of civil society organizations in Iraq to make a statement on the Global Campaign for Education, which contained the following:

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IDFN public rally, Baghdad, April 2009

“we campaign to wipe out illiteracy in Iraq and continue our activities and we know that one campaign is not enough activity to achieve a single goal, and our coalition will look like a small Onizt important to organizations, we are aware of the size and magnitude of the responsibility in this circumstance, which is our country, but we are aware of at the same time, that progress comes after the first step, and then drop after drop of rain falls, and the beginnings closed and open-ended, so we call this campaign and we hope shared with us that the masses of the messengers of science teachers, educators and civil society organizations and all of its citizens is the fact that this task is the task of real-time is required and necessary”.

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IDFN public rally, Baghdad, April 2009

Through the duration of the campaign, from April 20 until May 1st 2009, IDFN hold many activities:

- A rally was held in Baghdad
a rally in a park of Al- Zawra on 24/4/2009 with dozens of activists from civil society organizations and citizens who raised slogans and posters supporting the campaign and calling for the government of Iraq and the decision-makers to work to activate compulsory education and the provision of classrooms and centers for adult education and students who drop out of schools, as well as teaching staff at the rehabilitation and the provision of high-school supplies.

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IDFN public rally, Baghdad, April 2009

There were slogans, direct contact with people, questionnaires and interviews addressing the realities and problems of education in Iraq.
The participants toured the park, to familiarize citizens with the campaign, and then gathered at a meeting point inside the park. There, the coordinator of the IDFN network made a public announcement launching the Global Campaign for Education. He said it was important to continue the campaign in Iraq and across the world. The statement focused on the importance of activities carried out by IDFN and other civil society organizations, called for the Iraqi government and relevant ministries to work hard to free Iraq from illiteracy through activating the compulsory education law and the establishment of a national campaign to teach adults.

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- IDFN held a workshop in Baghdad
On 25 April 2009, IDFN held a workshop for civil society organizations to activate the campaign among the people. Plans were discussed to work in direction of the media and government, to distribute posters for the education campaign and for the distribution of a questionnaire form to gather opinions and bring the voice of the citizens to the decision-makers and specialists in the field of education. The workshp participants highlighted the need for activating the compulsory education law in Iraq.

- IDFN participated in the 1st of May celebrations in Baghdad
The IDFN network participated in the celebration of the International Workers’ Day on Friday 1st of May 2009, and jointly network with the Iraqi working class through participation in the mass rally, which started at ten in the morning of Tahrir Square, Victory Square and through to the courtyard of paradise, where stop the crowd and the representatives of labor organizations in the future and during the march, the deployment of the global education campaign posters and the slogans calling for the opening of centers for literacy and improve the educational level of the working class.

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- Workshop in Iraqi Kurdistan
On the 21st of April in 2009, Tammuz Organization for Social Development and IDFN collaborated with the Kurdistan Institute for Human Rights and a number of civil society organizations in Arbil for a workshop. The workshop focused on the definition of a global educational campaign and advocacy through civil society organizations in the Kurdistan region. Participating organizations in the workshop praised the campaign, announced their support and discussed methodology while expressing a desire to join the Iraqi Coalition in support of Global Campaign for Education.

The IDFN workshop on state of education in the governorate of Kurdistan, entitled "Iraq between reality and ambition" took place on the 27th of April. During the IDFN workshop, the general quality of education in Iraq was discussed but the concentration was on the Kurdish province. Illiteracy statistics in Iraqi population, negative consequences of illiteracy and individual, societal and governmental dynamics involved in this subject was laid on the table. Participants referred to the Global Campaign for Education and the Government’s Commitment to the Dakar Convention multiple times during the workshop. After extensive debates on how to meet global standards, the group came up with the following recommendations:

1- There is a need for literacy in official circles.
2 - Committing to and encouraging literacy should be appointed to official circles.
3 - There should be pressure on the government for eradication of illiteracy and development of education. School supplies and appropriate physical and moral environment should be provided for students and teachers alike, especially in rural areas and villages. In the same areas, literacy centers should be opened and kept open.
4 - The awareness on the importance of education should be raised.With the influence of chieftains and religious leaders, citizens should be encouraged to start and continue their education.

- In the province of Dhi Qar: On April 22nd, The Office of the Future Iraqi Democracy tried to familiarize citizens with the campaign through direct contact, interviews and questionnaires on the realities of Iraqi education. The target audience included children, adolescents and adults. Multiple reasons for illiteracy and its spread were detected as a result of this work. Economic factors were raised as biggest contributing factors.

The Office of Nasiriyah was established on April 27th, in the Hubibi courtyard. A number of representatives of civil society organizations and initiatives, political parties in the province gathered with the Directorate of Education, teachers, educational staff and supervisors for a festival addressing the future of the network and Tammuz Organization. The global campaign was referred to multiple times and its goals were presented. The festival included poems that encouraged education and civilization in Iraq.

- In Babel: Representatives from various NGOs and specialists in the educational field attended the workshop held on April 27th. The scope and goals of the campaign were explained, as well as how to activate orders of law to implement compulsory education and literacy. Posters of the campaign were distributed while the facilitators and the audience had a chance to exchange ideas. According to the report, a group of activists from July Organization for Social Development (Tammuz) visited a number of schools to talk about the campaign and demanded literacy in Iraq. They were received well by the schools ad students were reported to be excited about the project and helped activists put posters on the walls.
Another event that took place in the province of Babylon was a public festival where a large number of civil society organizations, political and social figures, the province council and representatives from ministry of education, teachers’ association of Babel, university professors and police and transit groups gathered on April 29th. Problems in education were addressed during debates and discussions which followed the ones made in July. Future of Iraqi civil society organizations have also been a main concern during these debates. The quality of education and the illiteracy rate in the province was presented while participating organizations demonstrated their solidarity with another campaign on implementing democracy in Iraq. This Iraqi organization has been using its democratic right to make recommendations to the central government and local communities and it has been campaigning for mandatory education, in which primary and secondary schooling expenses are covered by government. They have also been pressing for finding the best literacy campaign for adults, like they did for children. The two campaigns will continue to exist side by side and show solidarity with their support for another.

These activities are all a part of the national campaign to wipe out illiteracy in Iraq, in solidarity with Global Campaign for Education. The campaign was launched on April 20th and will continue until the end of year 2009. It should be noted that, by having opened literacy centers and computer education facilities in Baghdad and Babel, this campaign continues to support the education in Iraq for a more mobile and conscious participation in Iraqi democracy. The established system for the Global Education Campaign maintains its support for other civil society organizations such as partners of the Coalition for Iraqi Civil Society Organizations.

 
 

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