Washington, D.C., April 14, 2017 - I would like to thank Malala Yousafzai for her passionate support of education for all, especially every girl during the joint session of the Canadian parliament in Ottawa earlier this week.
Malala is an extraordinary young woman. She is courageous and passionate, as well as exuding warmth and good humor. Her extraordinary personal story and advocacy for girls’ education has shed light on the plight of millions of children around the world denied their right to a quality education.
I particularly thank Malala for her direct support of the Global Partnership for Education in her speech this week. GPE stands with her and wholeheartedly supports her call to the world to invest more in education and to pay specific attention to the education of girls. Education, particularly of girls, is the most powerful agent of change, driving increased prosperity, better health outcomes and creating more peaceful societies.
The Global Partnership for Education supports Malala’s request to make girls' education a central development theme of Canada’s G7 Presidency next year. Today, around the world, people look to Canada and admire its compassion, embrace of diversity and commitment to gender equality. All this means Canada is well placed to show global leadership on behalf of the hundreds of millions of children around the world who dream of getting a quality education.
GPE is proud that Canada has been a close and leading GPE donor and partner since its inception. We are grateful Canada has agreed to host our Board meeting in June. I know there is a sense of excitement about having the Board meet in Canada for the first time.
Late in 2017, GPE will be asking the global community to replenish our funding so we can continue our mission of building strong, high quality and inclusive school systems in almost 90 of the world's poorest countries. Malala has asked the Government of Canada to host the event and we would be delighted to have Canada as replenishment host.
We very much hope that the GPE replenishment, with support from Canada and other public and private donors, will mark the beginning of a new era in education financing to reverse the trend of declining aid for education. It is an opportunity to show a new commitment not just to the children of the developing world but to global security and prosperity.