Pathway to jobs in education for refugee graduates under new UNHCR and Teach For All partnership


Uganda. DAFI scholarships make refugee's university dreams a realitySouth Sudanese refugee, Esther, is studying commerce at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda, thanks to UNHCR’s DAFI programme. © UNHCR/Antoine Tardy

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the Teach For All global network are teaming up to support employment in education for refugee university graduates through a network of teaching fellowship programmes. The partnership will support the inclusion of refugees in host communities.’

According to the World Bank, economic returns for college attendance are the highest in the educational system with an average 17 per cent increase in earnings per year of schooling. Under the partnership, graduates supported by UNHCR’s flagship higher education scholarhip programme, DAFI – the Albert Einstein German Academic Refugee Initiative – will have a pathway to employment through a teaching and leadership development fellowship with Teach For All.

“This exciting partnership with Teach for All will help refugee graduates to transition into the job market and fulfil their immense potential as active members of their host communities,” said Rebecca Telford, UNHCR’s Chief of Education.

Worldwide, only 3 per cent of young refugees are currently enrolled in higher education. Through the DAFI programme, UNHCR supports refugees to enroll in public higher education institutions across the world, as part of its goal of enrolling 15 per cent of young refugee women and men in higher education by 2030 – the 15by30 target. This goal is aligned with the objectives of the Global Compact on Refugees and is consistent with the pledge to “leave no one behind” in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The collaboration will enable Teach For All’s network of partner organizations in refugee-hosting countries to include refugee graduates in their teacher cohorts and to develop them as inspirational classroom leaders. It will be piloted in several countries in Africa with the aim of expanding to other countries where Teach For All partner organizations work.

Employment opportunities such as the ones provided by the Teach For All network are vital to advancing the full social and economic inclusion of refugees who have completed an undergraduate degree and have valuable skills and talent to bring to the teaching profession.

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