Students at the Jesuit-run Loyola Secondary School in Wau, South Sudan. Photo: Jesuits of Eastern Africa Province
On International Human Rights Day, December 10, Canadian Jesuits International (CJI) reaffirms its solidarity with its Jesuit partners who promote peace and the defence of human rights in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
CJI highlights the work of its partners in ensuring that girls have access to quality and safe education, which is a human right. In South Sudan, the Jesuits of Eastern Africa Province, with the support of CJI and other members of the Xavier Network, runs a secondary school, a teacher training college, and an agricultural institute. South Sudan has the lowest literacy rate in sub-Saharan Africa (27%) and girls suffer the most. More than 70% of its population above the age of 15 is illiterate, majority of them women, according to UNESCO.
New UNESCO data shows that the number of out-of-school children worldwide has risen by six million since 2021, and now totals 250 million. About 122 million, or 48% of them are girls and young women; sub-Saharan Africa accounts for about 30% of the out-of-school population.
This year’s observance of Human Rights Day commemorates the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It seeks “to increase knowledge on the universality and indivisibility of human rights, especially among young people, inspire people to create a movement of humanity while empowering them to fight for their rights and take action.”
We urge you to support girls’ education in South Sudan and #Act4RightsNow: https://bit.ly/3sIgPq7