UN Office in Armenia marks the International Literacy Day

Today UN office in Armenia marked the International Literacy Day stressing the importance of literacy in modern world and called for greater efforts to enable children, youth and adults to read, write and transform their lives, emphasizing the fact that literacy is a universal right.

Over fifteen school pupils, including children with disabilities were invited to the UN House to discuss the role of literacy and attend a master class taught by famous Armenian aquarellist Peto Poghosyan.

This year’s International Literacy Day, observed annually on 8 September, focuses on the “literacies for the 21st century” to highlight the need to realize basic literacy skills for all as well as advanced literacy skills as part of lifelong learning.

The goal of the observance of the International Literacy Day is to raise awareness about the role of literacy as a human right and a foundation for lifelong learning, better well-being, sustainable and inclusive development.

“Literacy is much more than an educational priority – it is the ultimate investment in the future and the first step towards all the new forms of literacy required in the 21st century. We wish to see a century where every child is able to read and to use this skill to gain autonomy,” said Irina Bokova, UNESCO Director General.

Maria Dotsenko, the Representative of the UN Department of Public Information Office in Armenia, said: “Our young guests have learned that literacy is a human right, a tool of personal empowerment and means for social and human development.  I am confident that after today’s class, they will share with their peers that the literacy is at the heart of basic education for all, and is essential for eradicating poverty, reducing child mortality,  achieving gender equality and ensuring sustainable development, peace and democracy.”

“Thanks to the efforts of the Armenian authorities, the adult literacy rate in Armenia is 99.6 per cent, according to the Human Development Report 2013.  The UN supports their efforts to further promote the inclusive education. Even though Armenia enjoys high enrolment and literacy rates, some social groups face disadvantage in the education system. UNICEF survey revealed that 18% of children with disabilities do not attend school. UNICEF is working with the Armenian government to strengthen the inclusive education system”, she added.

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