- Community Empowerment
In August 2009, 1GOAL kicked off at Wembley Stadium with famous footballers...
In September, President Clinton backed 1GOAL...
In October, world leaders like Gordon Brown, Hillary Clinton, and Prime Minister Zapatero signed up...
In December, VEVO, the world’s largest online music site joined the 1GOAL team.
Footballers, politicians, music stars, fans of all stripes have signed their names to 1GOAL, and now, I hope, you can sign up, too.
Our goal? 1GOAL: to get 75 million children into school.
Today, in too many places, around the world, too many children are sentenced to a life of poverty and shackled to chains of hopelessness, through no fault of their own. Little boys washing cars for small change or shining shoes in exchange for food…little girls in search of water, hours from their home, or babysitting their brothers and sisters while their parents eke out meager livings…little people whose promise and potential waste away every day they’re not in school.
A lost generation.
And the longer we let this continue, the longer the legacy of inter-generational despair continues: maternal deaths spiral, child mortality grows, poverty cripples, unemployment rises, and infectious diseases spread needlessly.
But if we can get children off the sidelines, and into school, we can reverse these trends, and turn around the fortunes of families, communities and countries. Investing in a child’s education can deliver society-wide development returns. For example, just one addition year of quality schooling increases wages by around 10%, and can raise a country’s average GDP growth by up to 1%. Seven million cases of HIV/AIDS could be prevented in the next decade if every child received an education.
If we target girls, the benefits ripple through society faster and further. When girls go to school, they gain confidence and self-respect; they get married and give birth later in life; they have families that are smarter and healthier; and they build communities that are safer and more prosperous.
So, if the economics add up, and the fieldwork provides irrefutable facts, then there should be no excuse for failure.
Except lack of willpower.
And that’s, sadly, what many global leaders are guilty of. In 2000, at the World Education Forum, and the Millennium Summit, they pledged to get all primary age children into school. And there has been some progress. Almost 50 million more children are now in primary school. But 72 million still aren’t.
1GOAL is a new campaign to raise support for Education for All, and hold world leaders accountable to their promises. 1GOAL brings together the experience and expertise of the Global Campaign for Education with the passion and power of football through FIFA.
Between now and the end of the World Cup in South Africa in 2010, we want every football fan in the world to sign up to 1GOAL. We just want your name -a signature that demands fair play and justice for children anywhere, from world leaders everywhere.
If we work together, we can find that lost generation of children, and we can leave a legacy of education in Africa and beyond.
Please add your name to a team of champions: www.join1goal.org