Iraq Education and Training News


Kids in Iraq Camps Dream Big, but can’t Enroll in School

From AFP. Any opinions expressed are those of the authors, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

Maareb has big dreams, but she may never get to realise them. Every day, when her friends attend class in the Iraqi displacement camp they call home, she stays behind.

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UK efforts in Iraq ‘Hindered by Hostile Immigration Policy’

By John Lee.

A report from UK-based newspaper The Guardian says that British Government-backed projects to tackle the aftermath of the war in Iraq have been hindered by the UK’s continuing “hostile” immigration policy.

It cites the example of a civil service training scheme involving a £330,000 contract between the General Company for the Ports of Iraq (GCPI) and Middle East Graduate (MEG), a Sheffield-based student recruitment agency; the scheme now faces being axed after immigration officials rejected dozens of student visa applications.

Another project, funded by the UK government to research gender-based displacement and violence in Iraqi Kurdistan, was hampered when six members of the project’s Iraq-based team were denied visas.

More here.

(Source: The Guardian)

Why has Illiteracy Rate gone up in Iraq?

By Mustafa Saadoun for Al Monitor. Any opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Iraq Business News.

According to the head of the literacy department at the Directorate General of Education in Basra, Karim Handhal Abdul Karim, student participation in literacy centers in Iraq’s southern province of Basra has dwindled in 2018 by more than two-thirds compared to 2013.

Abdul Karim told the press Nov. 22:

“It is such a big contrast when comparing this year’s figures to those of 2013. The number of students in Basra’s 339 literacy centers amounted to over 39,000 in 2013. In 2018, however, only 1,200 students were enrolled in the 21 centers in the province.”

He attributed the decline to the fact that students enrolled in literacy centers are no longer paid by the government for taking classes at these centers.

Click here to read the full story.

AMAR Christmas Appeal is now LIVE!

Years of war and the invasion of ISIS have torn through the fabric of family life in Iraq: loved ones have been lost, homes destroyed, communities ripped apart.

One of the most devastating effects has been the vast numbers of children left without parents.

The AMAR International Charitable Foundation has been delivering medical and educational support to these orphans and families, but we need your help to continue.

This Christmas families all over the world will come together to share in the warmth, pleasure and love surrounding the festivities. Together under one roof, they’ll celebrate, enjoy hearty meals, exchange gifts.

But for many in Iraq there can be no such celebration. Their lives have been devastated by conflict and persecution. Almost 2 million remain displaced.

One of the most devastating consequences has been the vast numbers of children left without parents. They have been left traumatised and unprotected, and risk becoming forgotten casualties of the war.

This Christmas families all over the world will come together to share in the warmth, pleasure and love surrounding the festivities. Together under one roof, they’ll celebrate, enjoy hearty meals, exchange gifts.

But for many in Iraq there can be no such celebration. Their lives have been devastated by conflict and persecution. Almost 2 million remain displaced.

One of the most devastating consequences has been the vast numbers of children left without parents. They have been left traumatised and unprotected, and risk becoming forgotten casualties of the war.

How can I help?

£14 for an emergency winter blanket
£85 for food box feeding a family for a month
£49 for a Woman Health Volunteer to travel and visit families for a month
£77 for one adult wheelchair
£290 for an English teacher for a month
£244 for an ambulance driver for a month

Please help us to help them.

(Source: AMAR)

Cash-for-Work Project in Halabja

Cash-for-Work project in Halabja paves a safer and easier road to school for local children

42 host community members, IDPs and refugees employed to restore roads and walkways that will enable safe access to schools and markets for families in Halabja.

To neighbours in the communities of Azadi and Sirwan, in northern Iraq, paved roads mean much more than improved accessibility for cars. Once loose dust and rock, the road network connecting homes and markets posed a hazard for children during the regions season of heavy rainfall.

“They had to put those plastic bags and boots which was especially difficult for the kids to go to school,” described 15-year-old Shahad, an IDP from Baghdad.

“Especially in this area in winter we have a high rate of rainfall. And the land here was agricultural land before – so when it rains, it becomes mud, also posing health-hazards for pedestrians,” added Mr. Omed Noori Hama-Salih, Supervising Engineer, Municipality of Sirwan Subdistrict.

UNDP’s Iraq Crisis Response and Resilience Programme (ICRRP) recently supported a project that would enable the Governorate of Halabja to restore this essential basic service.

Following the launch in September, 42 individuals (host community members, internally displaced people (IDPs) and refugees) received temporary employment opportunities to work on the project as engineers, labourers and administrative support.

This project is one of 28 that were made possible with generous funding from the Federal Government of Germany, supporting the construction and restoration of critical services such as sewerage, electricity, water and roads for some 680,000 people across the Sulaimaniyah & Halabja Governorates and Raparin & Garmiyan Administrations, in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

In Azadi and Sirwan, IDPs, refugees and host community members are working together to improve the road and walkway networks for the benefit of all 1,500 community members. “In the past years, this was muddy and all children could not go to school easily and people could not go to do their services and visit market, but now when it will be paved of course it will ease our lives,” said Mr. Othman Aziz, a resident since 1978. “We consider that we will be having a new life because then our kids can go to school easily and our families will have an easy and nice access road to go and run their daily lives.”

Since 2014, Halabja Governorate has become host to more than 653 refugees and 7,177 IDPs, leaving their homes to find safety and security. Today, the pressure to ensure the provision of basic infrastructure and services is intensified by severe financial crisis, ultimately affecting the quality of life in the region for the host communities, as well as the IDPs and refugees they host.

In Azadi and Sirwan, IDPs, refugees and host community members are working together to improve the road and walkway networks for the benefit of all 1,500 community members. “In the past years, this was muddy and all children could not go to school easily and people could not go to do their services and visit market, but now when it will be paved of course it will ease our lives,” said Mr. Othman Aziz, a resident since 1978.

“We consider that we will be having a new life because then our kids can go to school easily and our families will have an easy and nice access road to go and run their daily lives.”

Since 2014, Halabja Governorate has become host to more than 653 refugees and 7,177 IDPs, leaving their homes to find safety and security. Today, the pressure to ensure the provision of basic infrastructure and services is intensified by severe financial crisis, ultimately affecting the quality of life in the region for the host communities, as well as the IDPs and refugees they host.

(Source: UNDP)

Giving Tuesday: Choose Iraqi Kids!

It’s here! #Giving Tuesday! 

Make a high impact gift to Iraqi orphans and vulnerable children today.

How? $40,000 is available in matching funds for education, nutrition, legal protection, medical care, and psychosocial support for orphans, street kids, and displaced children.

Donate $25, $50, $100, or more and get a 100% match PLUS, for every $25 donated, a girl or boy gets a gift of a doll or soccer ball.

Watch this video:  Their smiles belong to you!

(Source: Iraqi Children Foundation)

260+ attend IBBC Iraq Reconstruction Conference

IBBC welcomed 260+ delegates to Dubai to discuss ‘Iraq – Reconstruction & Rebuilding, how to deliver Vision’ with expert Industry, Government and International Organisations on 25th November

Iraq Britain Business Council held its annual Autumn Conference in Dubai yesterday on the 25th November at the Address Dubai Marina in Dubai.

The event hosted many speakers from the major companies operating in Iraq including IOCs, Logistics, Finance and Legal and Infrastructure, as well as Government Officials from the UK, UAE, Iraq, The World Bank and IMF to discuss the key issues facing Iraq’s economy today. IBBC welcomed over 260 delegates at the event for its largest ever attendance.

Under the Chairmanship of Vikas Handa, IBBC Representative in the UAE, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, President of IBBC and The Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Iraq opened the conference alongside H.E. Abdulla Ahmed Al Saleh, Undersecretary of the UAE Ministry of Economy for Foreign Trade & Industry Professor Sabah Mushatat, Prime Minister’s Advisor for Reconstruction and Investment. H.E. Bengan Rikani, Iraqi Minister for Housing, Reconstruction & Public Municipalities, Government of the Republic of Iraq. Michael Townshend, Regional President BP Middle East and Jon Wilks CMG, Her Majesty’s Ambassador to Iraq.

HE Abdulla Ahmed Al Saleh

IBBC was honoured to have HE Abdulla alSaleh give a keynote speech at the IBBC Conference in Dubai for the third year running, His Excellency reaffirmed the UAE’s commitment to building a diverse and prosperous Iraq as per the IBBC’s mission statement. Professor Mushatat delivered a message from the Prime Minister of Iraq H.E. Adil Abdul-Mahdi delivering the PMs support for the development of the Private Sector and Foreign Enterprise in Iraq and complimenting IBBC as a trusted partner to achieve these goals.

H.E. Bengan Rikani spoke of the challenges ahead to meet the population growth of Iraq, the continuing efforts to rebuild liberated areas and the infrastructure projects underway. Ambassador Jon Wilks highlighted the importance of Iraq to the British economy, where trade has increased by 10% in the last year alone and stressed the commitment of PM Theresa May, Liam Fox MP Secretary of State for International Trade and DFID to facilitating Trade between the UK & Iraq.

“Now is the time to look again at the Iraq Market”
Her Majesty’s Ambassador Jon Wilks CMG

Michael Townshend reminded the audience that there was more Oil available globally than humanity could consume and that the Rumaila’s oilfield operated by BP in Iraq was not only one of the largest but also one of the most economic fields in the globe, providing Iraq with the lion share of its incomes.

Michael Townshend, BP

This year’s Agenda focused on the key issues of how Iraq can rebuild its towns and cities and develop its economy and evolving Infrastructure and Utilities with an emphasis on expanding Oil & Gas production, improving the Regulatory Framework and Financial systems and exploring the role of Logistics in moving people and materials into and around the country.

Conference Sessions & Speakers:

Logistics – Imports/Exports, People & Goods

Beverley Simpson, Director – Iraq, Department of International Trade; Rolls-Royce; SKA International Group; Basrah Gateway Terminal; G4S

Regulatory & Financial Framework – Encouraging International Investment

Management Partners; Dr Sabah Mushatat, Investment & Reconstruction Advisor to the Prime Minister of Iraq; National Bank of Iraq; IMF; AFC Iraq Fund; Eversheds-Sutherland

Energy – Increasing Production

Shell; Chevron; GE

Infrastructure – Rebuilding & Utilities Supply

IFC; Wood; EAMES; Siemens; Prof. Frank Gunter, Lehigh University

Ms Duha Mohammed, Capital Bank of Iraq

The conference also featured the highly successful roundtable discussions, where delegates engaged in dynamic and concentrated debates on the country issues which matter most. Delegates also enjoyed a pre-conference reception on 24th November at the Address Dubai Marina, as well as many networking opportunities throughout the event.

IBBC would like to thank the efforts of its sponsors Rolls Royce, Serco, SKA International Group, Siemens, GE, Basra Gateway Terminal and Khudairi Group.

IBBC also held a Tech Forum on 25th November under the Chairmanship of IBBC Marketing Consultant Ashley Goodall. The forum ran in parallel to the conference at the same venue. Some of the most important innovators of Tech in Iraq spoke on Fintech, the Consumer Economy, E-Government and the Start-Up Economy. Speakers included representatives from EY Iraq, Avaya, Citi Bank, Restrata Group, Microsoft, Khudairi Group, VentureSouq, Careem and the International Development Bank.

IBBC is particularly grateful to Ms Suha Mohammed, DG for payments at the Iraqi Central Bank, and to Mr Hiwa Afandi, DG of the Information Technology Department of the Kurdistan Regional Government for participating in this event.

Tech companies are already disrupting the heavily state dominated Iraqi economy and are the bearers of hope for tangible change in a country that has an extremely young and tech savvy population and has an urgent need to create hundred of thousands new jobs every year.

For any enquires please email london@webuildiraq.org

(Source: IBBC)

Please Support Widows and Orphans in the Middle East

By Robert Cole, for the AMAR International Charitable Foundation.

For hundreds of millions of families around the world, this month’s Mawlid al-Nabi commemoration to mark the Prophet Mohammed’s birthday will be a time for family, friends, joy and celebration. A time of prayer, exchanging gifts, embracing the wider community and extending to others their religious generosity.

But for millions more, particularly widows and children, there will be no celebration as they continue their battle against war, hunger, and disease.

In Iraq alone, there are one million widows and, tragically, more than four million orphans.

AMAR International has been delivering urgent medical and educational support in the Middle East for the last 26 years. Using a staff comprised almost entirely of national professionals and volunteers, they have treated more than 10 million patients and have opened 46 medical centres across Iraq.

But we couldn’t have done any of this without your help. Today we are launching a new, urgent appeal for emergency funds to help widows and orphans in the most desperate need.

Please help us to help them.

(Source: AMAR)

Inequality shapes the Lives of Children in Iraq

Deep inequality continues to shape the lives of children in Iraq

A comprehensive survey on children’s wellbeing in Iraq released today found that conflict and inequality remain defining features of childhood. A majority of poor children are not receiving any form of government assistance. Even as the fighting has subsided, 80 per cent of all children experience violence at home or in school.

While almost all children (92 per cent) are enrolled in primary school, just over half of children from poorer backgrounds complete their primary education. The gap widens in upper secondary school, where less than a quarter of poor children graduate, compared to three-quarters of children from wealthier backgrounds.

Children’s education needs in Iraq are vast: half of all public schools in the country require rehabilitation and one in three schools run multiple shifts, squeezing children’s learning time. The five governorates with the lowest school enrollment and attendance rates are concentrated in the country’s southern governorates which remain its poorest, and in Anbar and Ninawa – the two governorates that have borne the brunt of the violence of the last few years. Attending school regularly is an essential part of healing for the more than 1 million children estimated to require psychosocial support to cope with the invisible wounds of war.

“The data is the clearest indication yet that the most vulnerable children in Iraq are the ones that are most likely to fall behind,” said Peter Hawkins, UNICEF Representative in Iraq. “The hard-won gains to end the conflict in Iraq and transition to a stable future could be lost without additional investments for all children to reach their full potential.”

Iraq has made notable progress on newborn and child health, including maintaining high levels of assisted births and reducing the number of children who die in their first month of life from 20 deaths per 1000 live births to 14 since the last survey was conducted in 2011. But the challenges arise soon after birth: Only 4 out of 10 of children are fully vaccinated, with the poorest children missing out the most.

Half of all Iraqi households are at risk of drinking contaminated water and less than 40 per cent of the population has access to drinking water at home, placing children at grave risk of waterborne diseases.

“As Iraq moves past the violence of the last few years and forges a new path for itself, it must prioritize the wellbeing of all children,” said Hawkins. “Children are the future of this country, and a growing gap between the haves and the have-nots sows discord and is detrimental for children and for Iraq. With the right commitment and the right policies in place, the Government of Iraq can make a difference.”

To maintain Iraq’s recent gains and protect the rights of all children, UNICEF calls on the Government of Iraq to invest in services that directly benefit those children affected by conflict and poverty, and to work towards putting an end to all forms of violence against children.

(Source: UNICEF)

US Music Fellowship Opportunity for Young Musicians

OneBeat brings together musicians from all over the world to the U.S. for an exhilarating month of performances, discussions, and interactive music-making events. OneBeat grew out of a notion that musical collaboration is a powerful way to connect people across political and cultural differences.

Applications for ONEBEAT 2019 are open from November 19 through December 21, 2018.

ONEBEAT is a U.S. government-sponsored fellowship that uses music as a tool to promote dialogue, creativity, and personal engagement among musicians from around the world. Applicants must be musicians aged 19-35 who can demonstrate musical talent, leadership skills, entrepreneurial spirit, and a strong commitment to building more cohesive communities at home.

The ONEBEAT program takes place in the United States over four weeks in September-October 2019. Two weeks are spent in a musical residency, and two weeks on a performance tour.  During the residency, participants form small musical ensembles, create original material, and develop workshop ideas.

While on tour, fellows give public performances in various U.S. cities and lead workshops with youth and community groups. ONEBEAT fellows will have their travel, room, and board costs covered.  Applicants must demonstrate basic English proficiency.  Interested musicians can apply directly via the OneBeat website http://1beat.org/apply .

(Source: US Embassy in Baghdad)