UNESCO Prize for Girls’ and Women’s Education
Gender equality in education is a basic right and a prerequisite to build inclusive societies. Although notable progress has been made over the last 20 years, 16 million girls will never set foot in a classroom (UNESCO Institute for Statistics).
The UNESCO Prize for Girls’ and Women’s Education honours outstanding innovation and contributions made by individuals, institutions and organizations to advance girls’ and women’s education. It is the first UNESCO Prize of this nature and will be unique in showcasing successful projects that improve and promote the educational prospects of girls and women and in turn, the quality of their lives.
Supported by the Government of the People’s Republic of China, the Prize is conferred annually to two laureates and consists of an award of USD 50,000 each to further their work in the area of girls’ and women’s education.
The two laureates of the first edition of the Prize were selected by the Director-general of UNESCO on the basis of recommendations by the International Jury, composed of five experts in girls' and women’s education. The Prize was awarded for the first time to two outstanding projects from Indonesia and Zimbabwe at an official ceremony that was held in Beijing, P.R. China in June 2016.
Established in 2015 by UNESCO’s Executive Board, the Prize will contribute to the attainment of the 2030 Sustainable Development agenda, particularly SDG goals 4 on education and 5 on gender equality. It will also support UNESCO’s global priorities included in the Medium-term Strategy 2014-2021 and the Gender Equality Action Plan 2014-2021 (GEAP II).