On 28 April 2015, the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, signed a strategic partnership agreement with the Executive Director of UNFPA, Babatunde Osotimehin, on the margins of the UN Chief Executives Board Meeting held at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris.
Through this new strategic partnership agreement, UNESCO and UNFPA will join forces to tackle the unfinished business of the MDGs, and to deliver effectively on the emerging post-2015 development agenda through cooperation in four main areas:
- Advancing universal access to basic quality education and literacy programmes;
- Implementing integrated education approaches and programmes on issues related to population, sexual and reproductive health, gender-based violence and HIV/AIDS;
- Addressing young people’s rights and needs within the overall development context;
- Building on the role of culture for sustainable development.
Ms Bokova welcomed the Partnership, which builds on a long history of cooperation “This Partnership reinforces our efforts to continue addressing ‘unfinished business’ and to put the dots between education and health in the post-2015 agenda. I am very pleased that it places importance on culturally sensitive approaches and on the role of culture as a development enabler,” she said.
Mr Osotimehin concurred on the benefits of the Partnership to implement the post-2015 agenda, underscoring strong interest across Member States in the education of young girls. “I believe that the developing world can reach the demographic dividend quickly if it invests in appropriate education to take them to a new level,” highlighting the importance of the education-health nexus for human dignity and job creation.