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Education

Today 1 in 5 children and young people around the world are not in school.

That’s an estimated 263 million children missing out on an education. (UN, 2018)

Around the world

63m

primary school age children (6-11)
out of school

61m

lower secondary school age children (12-14)
out of school

139m

upper secondary school age children (15-17)
out of school

Number of children missing out on an education:

12.6m
0.9m
29.9m
96.7m
18.5m
97.3m
0.8m

Despite the universal right to education promoted by the UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, it is expected that 2030 will see a predicted (pre-COVID 19) 200 million children out of school.

No legal identification

Without their official identification documents street children either cannot enrol in school or are unable to take their exams, meaning they cannot progress.

No permanent address

Street children are a transient community, often moving from place to place which makes enrolling and staying in school extremely difficult.

No legal guardian

With no one to enrol them and support them to remain in school, children are unmotivated to stay. Earning their own income is often the priority for them.

Financial responsibility

Street children often have to work to support themselves and their family.

Cost of uniforms and books

Children may not be able to afford all the associated costs of uniforms or books.

Once in school street children often face discrimination in the guise of marginalisation, stigmatisation and discrimination in class, all which affect their self-esteem, attainment and desire to remain attending.

Having missed years of school living on the streets, many children find themselves at a disadvantage, unable to catch up with children of their own age and not permitted into classes with younger children.

Without access to this basic human right many street children will be unable to escape the vices of poverty and unable to create a better and safer future for themselves through education.

Our education work

Each country has unique, complex and interrelated challenges when it comes to street children enrolling and being retained in school.

Working with parents, guardians and caregivers

Our partners work alongside this group to change their attitudes towards education, to promote its importance as well as ensuring they have the financial means to send their children to school and to not rely on them as income generators.

Improving community responsibility

Our partners work with the wider community challenging attitudes that hinder street children from gaining an education. This can range from meeting with traditional leaders, religious leaders, teachers and headteachers – working to ensure that street children are not facing barriers to achieving educational attainment.

Reducing violence in schools

Many street children, especially girls, face violence on a daily basis in school. Our partners work with the schools and pupils providing training on Child Protection, Child Rights and positive discipline methods.

Toybox works with our partners to give street children the opportunity to learn through a variety of programmes:

Educational clubs

913

Support with formal school enrolment

473

Vocational training

556

General social and life skills

912

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Other ways to take action

How education has changed lives

Chimini

Education • Nepal • 2021

“If I could change one thing right now, it would be for coronavirus to go away, to have enough food and money, and to be able to continue my education so I can stand on my own.”

Read Chimini's story

Tej

Education • Nepal • 2021

“My life has changed a lot since attending the project. I thought I would never be able to continue my education and that I would have to be on the street my entire life to earn a living.”

Read Tej's story

Amir

Education • India • 2021

“I pay a lot of attention to my studies and now speak with confidence to everyone. I love encouraging the rest of the children to study at the education club — I feel very happy when I help others and when I see children playing and studying instead of working.”

Read Amir's story