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Susan O'Rourke | August 24, 2022

Recent news about efforts to secure education for girls in Afghanistan has brought needed attention to the critical role literacy plays in educational advancement and economic opportunity, both globally and locally. Around the world, organizers and educators are working to achieve educational equity and meet Sustainable Development Goal 4 where “all youth and most adults achieve literacy and numeracy by 2030.” Investment in education is particularly important as, UNESCO’s Institute of Statistics reports, “there are still 773 million illiterate adults around the world, most of whom are women.”

Despite the challenges efforts to improve learning outcomes are being made by individual educators, families, universities, governments, and NGOs who believe, as the Friday Institute expressed, “that literacy is powerful and liberatory — with reading, writing and speaking as not just tools but values that lead to personal and social change, especially for marginalized populations….and that literacy is a vehicle for critical thinking and action for the self, community and world (Freire, 1970)….[that] leads to increased self-esteem, critical action and global citizenship.

We are so grateful to educators committed to expanding literacy and helping students become thoughtful and intellectually curious global citizens!

Take a look through the following resources on initiatives to improve literacy in North Carolina and around the world and to teach International Literacy Day on September 8th.


Literacy Resources for Educators

Resources on Sustainable Development Goal 4 and Literacy Around the World