The Global Goals for Sustainable Development

Osu Children’s Library Fund - Renovation of Kathy Knowles Community Library

The Osu Children’s Library Fund’s first permanent library was built in Accra in 1992 from a converted 40-foot shipping container. It offers daily storytimes, free literacy classes, computer instruction, cultural dancing opportunities, and lay librarian training. To date, the library has received close to 300,000 visits from children and adult learners. Recent funding from the Manitoba Government Matching Grant Program paid for extensive renovations including a new roof and floor, the addition of two toilets, and a storeroom. These improvements help to mark the library’s 25th anniversary year!

Goal 4: Quality Education

Since 2000, there has been enormous progress in achieving the target of universal primary education. The total enrolment rate in developing regions reached 91 percent in 2015, and the worldwide number of children out of school has dropped by almost half. There has also been a dramatic increase in literacy rates, and many more girls are in school than ever before. These are all remarkable successes.

Progress has also been tough in some developing regions due to high levels of poverty, armed conflicts and other emergencies. In Western Asia and North Africa, ongoing armed conflict has seen an increase in the number of children out of school. This is a worrying trend. While Sub-Saharan Africa made the greatest progress in primary school enrolment among all developing regions – from 52 percent in 1990, up to 78 percent in 2012 – large disparities still remain. Children from the poorest households are up to four times more likely to be out of school than those of the richest households. Disparities between rural and urban areas also remain high.

Achieving inclusive and quality education for all reaffirms the belief that education is one of the most powerful and proven vehicles for sustainable development. This goal ensures that all girls and boys complete free primary and secondary schooling by 2030. It also aims to provide equal access to affordable vocational training, to eliminate gender and wealth disparities, and achieve universal access to a quality higher education.