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Dubai Cares, UNICEF, to Help Educate 7,000 Bosnian Children

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Abu Dhabi: A Dh6.25 million humanitarian scheme funded by Dubai Cares will help to put more than 7,000 Bosnian children into early education over two years, with greater inclusion for disabled children. Increasing Early Learning Opportunities for Children in Bosnia and Herzegovina, a partnership between the Dubai charity and the UN Children’s Fund, seeks to provide a sustainable education framework for children aged between 4 and 6 in the country. Under the initiative, 400 children and 350 youngsters with learning delays or disabilities, aged between 4 and 5, now have access to pre-school education. A delegation from Dubai Cares travelled to Sarajevo and neighboring towns and villages to view the progress of the work. Under current standards in Bosnia, compulsory free education only begins once a child reaches 7, missing out on vital early development. “Education is one of the most powerful tools that can be utilized in the fight against poverty,” said Tariq Al Gurg, chief executive of Dubai Cares. “Its significance is amplified in evolving nations like Bosnia and Herzegovina, where educated youth will have to play a key role in the prosperity and growth of this country. The latest statistics from UNICEF show that only 15 per cent of the children across the country are enrolled in preschool education, regarded as essential for the pupils’ future education and employment. The figure drops to just 2 per cent for the country’s marginalized and poorer Roma population, estimated to be as many as 100,000 people. The key objectives of the initiative are social inclusion, education for disabled children and more learning hours.