Young campaigners from as far as Hull and Swansea travelled to the Houses of Parliament in London yesterday to ask their MPs to take action to send every child to school. The students, from age 7-16, held up a giant “58,000,000” in front of Big Ben to highlight the number of children currently out of school.
At an event inside the House of Commons, they were joined by TV presenter and Paralympian Ade Adepita, a passionate campaigner for education for all. Ade, who moved to London from Nigeria at a young age, talked about how how education and sport changed his life and gave him opportunities he knows he would never have had, if he had stayed in Nigeria. Nigeria is the country with the largest number of out of school children currently at over 10 million, with an average of 100 pupils in each classroom.
Young campaigners Lauren Hutfield and Aodhan Griffin Barr from Bishop Vaughn School in Swansea, who met their MP Carolyn Harris at the event said: “We got involved in Send My Friend to School because we are passionate about the issues of education and equality. We realise how lucky we are to receive a free, quality education and believe this is a universal right.
“The campaign is really important because it allows young people to make a real difference – we are directly influencing policy makers and politicians and helping others without a voice. We hope that 2015 will be remembered as the year when world leaders took decisive action to make sure every child in the world receives a quality education. We hope that Carolyn will now raise these issues in Parliament and encourage the government to make education a priority at the UN Convention this summer.”
This event was hosted by Mark Williams MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Global Education for All. It came just before our national Day of Action on Friday 26th June, when over 4300 schools across the UK will be speaking to their MP about what world leaders need to do to get every child into school.
Students attending were:
Lauren Hutfield and Aodhan Griffin Barr from Bishop Vaughn School, Swansea
Beth Murrell and Paulina Kobu, Archbishop Sentamu Academy, Hull
Thomas Fox and Victoria Schoeps, Isambard Community School, Redhouse Way, Swindon
Khadeza Ali and Nazia Islam, Oaklands School, London
Katherine Broadhurst, Morgan Steele, Georgia Dearnley, and Jack Walsh, at The St Philip Howard Catholic High School, West Sussex
Students from DASP schools in Dorset, and Bexleyheath Academy.
Photo credits: Georgie Scott